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at || 

Deoraidh shíor gan sgíth ganfhos 
Mianaid a d-tir's a n-dúthchos. 

— Egerton MS. i6i (British Museum). 













M. A. (Edin.) ; PH.D. (Vienna) ; Coll. Jesu, Oxon. 

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Printed by Ballantvne. Hanson 6- Co. 
At the Ballantyne Press 




I bid iiiy worlc God-speed, it is my duty and 
lege to thanlc those W. 

lo have personally helped 
me. The Hon. Secretary of the Society, Miss 
Eleanor Hull, made vahiable suggestions and criti- 
cisms on my MS. translation in its initial stage. 
Throughout she abounded in help such as was to 
me particularly valuable. My rendering when in 
proof was subjected to further criticism by Miss 
S. Shaw Kissock, Edinburgh, whose imaginative 
Ínsight readily re-Iived the old incidents once raore. 
To her acumen, independent thought, and Eesthetic 
judgment, I owe still further insight, even into the 
original. She made the work, in a peculiar sense, 
her own, To these ladies I owe much. 

To the President, Mr. Douglas Hyde, LL.D., I 
am indebted in an especial way for his kindness in 
connection with this undertaldng. To Proíessor 
Mackinnon, Edinburgh University, who with great 
courtesy and care read my MS. rendering, I tender 
thanks íor very able and helpful criticism and dis- 
cussion, as well as for the generous loan of several 
books. To the veteran student of Celtic Myfh and 
Saga, Mr, Alfred Nutt, I am under great obligation 
for his valuable exposition of the principles which 
in such a work as this it would be well for one to 


have in view. For all the guidance and kihdness 
of Principa! Rhj^s, LL.D., Jesus Professor oí Celtic, 
who read this tale with me at Oxford, 1 am most 
grateíul. As a native HÍghlander this had for me 
an entirely unique value. How often has he not 
pointed out to me words in Cyniric cognate with 
those in this tale, thus helping to elucidate the text ! 
In showing its relation also to the circumstances of 
a far past, he opened up to me many interesting 

The care and intelligence of the house of Messrs. 
Ballantyne, Hanson & Co. Ín the printing have been 
of very essential assistance. The authorities for all 
verifications, isolated or otherwise, are cited through- 
out. And it wiU readily be believed that ere essaying 
an undertaking Iike this, I learned to value very highly 
the work of all fellow-labourers. 

May this tale, now as a whole accessible to the 
English reader íor the first time, prove Ítself a feast 
as of yore. 




Prefacb • .... V 

Abbreviated Titles of Works referred to . . ix 

General Introduction xi 

Special Introduction xxiv 

The Probable Date of the Text xlvii 



I. Personal Names 131 

II. Geographical Names 140 

III. Textual Notes 145 

IV. Special Notes— 

On the Chariot . ... . .183 

On Dress 186 

On Games and Amusements .... 190 

On Curoi Mac Daire 192 

On the Revolving Castle .198 

On the Champion's Covenant .... 199 

On the Arts 207 

On Belief 209 




AFM. — "Annals of the Four Masters," ed. O'Donovan. 

Anct. Laws. — " The Ancient Laws of Ireiand," vols. i.-iv. 

Bez2. Beit. — Beizenberger's Bsitrage. 

Boriase. — " Dolmens of Ireland," by W. Copeland Borlase, 3 vols. 

CL.—Celtische Lexicographie, ed. Stokes and Meyer, 

Cormac. — Cormac's "Glossary." 

CZ.~Celtische Zeitschrifi, ed. Stem and Meyer. 

Ed. — The Edinburgh MS. of present lext. 

Eg. — The Egerton MSS. of present text. 

FB.—Y\ti. Bricrend. 

//;— MS. of present text (Trinity College, Dublin). 

Hib. Leel.— " Hibbert Lectures," by J. Rhjs. 

Hn. — Henebn^s " iííXfírtóí'io Inauguralis : a contribution to the 

Phonology of Desi-Irish," Gryphiswa!diíe, 1S98, 
Hull. — "The Cuchulainn Saga," ed. Eleanor HuU, 
Hyde.— " A Literary History of Ireland," by Douglas Hyde. 
JB. — Imram Brain, ed. Kuno Meyer and Alfred Nutt. 
IF. — Indogermanische Forschungen. 

Ir. Texte,— /«JC-íí Tsxte mit Wórterbuch, von E. Windisch. 
JHHAI.— ' ]o\iraai af the RoyaI HÍstorical and Archseological 

Association of Ireland." 
KS.—Keltische Studien, von H. Zimmer, I.-II. 
KZ. — Zeiischrift jar Vergleichende Sprachforschung {containing 

Zimmer's Keltische Studien). 
L. — Leyden MS. of present text. 
LG. — Leadharnan Gleann^ by George Henderson. 
LH. — Uber Hymnorum {li^nTy Bradshaw Society, 1897). 
LL — " The Book of Leinster," facsimile, Royal Irish Academy. 
LU. — "The Book of the Dun Cow," facsimile, RoyaI Irish 

Ml. — The Milan Glosses, ed. Ascoli : II Codice Irlandese dell' 

A mbrosiana. Turin. 
MR.—" The Battle of Mag Rath," ed. O'Donovan. 


jV.— Norse. 

O'C— 0'Curry's "Manners and Customs of the Ancient Irish" 

(his Lectures on the Matiuscript materials are so specified). 
0£.— Old English. 
OHG.—0\á High German. 

PASScot. — " Proceedings of the Aniiquarian SocÍety of Scotland." 
r. — recitative, Rosc. 
RC. — Revue Celiique. 
RR.—Cath Ros na n-RÍg, ed. Hogan. 
S. Gad. — Silva Gadelica^ by S. H. 0'Grady, z vols. 
Sí;.— The St. Gall Glosses. 
5J/.— MacCarthy : " On the Siowe Missal." 
SR. — Saltair na Rann, ed Stoices, in Amcdota Oxoniensa. 
TE. — Toc/imarc Emere, ed Meyer in RC, and of thc longer 

version in Hull. 
Three Frag. — "Three Fragments of Irish Annals," by Duald Mac 

Firbis, ed. O'Donovan. 
Trias Thaum.—Trias Thaumaturga, by Father John Colgan. 
Trans. Phil. Soc. — " Transactions of the Philological Soeiety" 

(Strachan's investigation on " The Deponent Verb "). 
US, — Urheltischer Sprachschats von Stohís, bearbeitet von Beszen- 

berger (Ficlc's Vergleichendes Wbrterbuch). 
Wb. — The Wiinburg Old Irish Glosses. 
Z*. — Grammatica Celtica: Zeuss — Ebel, 
ZfDA.—ZHtschrift fUr Deutsches Altertum. 



IN the Cuchulainn Cycle of Celtic Saga Bricriu-of- 
the-Evil- {/iV. venomous) Tongue is the counterpart 
of Conan of the Ossianic Cycle, oí SÍr Kaye of the 
Arthurian romances, He is portrayed as a personage 
of delicate if bitter satire, often Iike his Greek parallel, 
Thersites, a man of unmeasured words. Conan is 
described as crop-eared, spiteful, boastful, an object 
at once of ridicule and of fear among the Féni. 
Thersites was the ugliest man who came to Troy — 

" With squinting eye3 and one distorted fbot, 
Hts shoulders round and buríed in his breast, 
His narrow head with scanty growth of hair." 

Bricriu is characterised by his motto, " Clearer to 
me is a whisper than to any one else a cry." ' HÍs 
place is sometimes taken by Dubthach (Duffach or 
Duach) of the Chafer Tongue, as in the " Book of the 
Dun Cow " version of the Mesce Ulad, and in § 90 of the 
present tale, Elsewhere he is described as son-of- 
Cairpre,^ while his name is impressed upon the topo- 

' "is irdarcu dam-sa sanas ná do nech aile égetn." — LL. 264*, 
11; 2ÓB*, 37- 

' Hull, p. 224 ; mac Carbajií', Wind. /r, Textt, p. ico, whetc 
the contraction seems wrongly extended. 


graphy oí the country, as in Lough Bríckland, Ín the 
barony of Upper Iveagh, co. Down.* HÍs palace was 
at {Dun Rudraige) Dun Rury, in North-east Ulster, 
His death was on this wise. Having come from Ulster 
to beg presents from Fergus mac Róig, Bricriu was 
wounded and lay iil at Cruachan during the whole 
war oí the Táin. The day on which the men oí Erin 
returned from the war, Bricriu got up for the iirst 
time, For his taunt {athis mór) he paid with his life. 
Forced to witness the fight between the White-Horned 
and the Dun of Cuailnge (CooIey), he was killed by 
one of the infuriated bulls.* That was the manner 
oí his violent and tragic death. In the tale Echtra 
Nerai{=Táin Be Aingen)^ in course of the narrative 
of the fight between the two buUs at Cruachan we 
read : 

"'What did the bulls bellow,' quoth Méve to the 
herd Buaigle, 'when the White-Horn had beaten the 
other ?' 'I know that, my good father Fergus,' quoth 
Bricriu ; 'it is the strain which fhou sangest in the 
morning.' On that Fergus glanced aside and struck 
with his íist at Bricriu's head, The five men oí the 
draught-board in Fergus's hand went into the head of 
Bricriu. And it was a lasting hurt to him. Thus 
perished one oí the territorial lords of Ultonia." 

The sequence of the more prominent tales oí the 
Cuchulainn Cycle is inferred to be : The Demolition 
of Da Derga's Fort, the Cattle-Spoil of CooIey, the 

' O'Donovan in AFM.j cf. Loch Bricrend in Uib Echach Ulad 
(see Félire, sub Oct. 36). 

= LL. 103'', 44-104% 13 ; if. Hull, p. 224. 


Battle of Rosnaree, the Sick-Bed of Cuchulainn.^ 
If Bricriu's death took place at the end of the war 
of the Tain, the present saga must chronologically be 
assigned a place before the Táin Bó Cualnge. 

To unfold the workings of such a nature the saga 
avails itself of an old national custom. For at Celtic 
entertainments in olden times says AthenEeus,^ quoting 
Posidonius, "there was a custom that a hind-quarter 
of pork was put on the table and the bravest man 
took Ít ; if any one else laid claim to it, then the two 
rose up to fight tiU one of them was slain. And other 
men in the theatre having received some silver or 
gold money, and some even for a number of earthen 
vesseis full of wine, having taken pledges that the 
gifts promised shalí really be given, and having dis- 
tributed them among their nearest connections, have 
laid themselves down on doors with their faces up- 
wards and then allowed some bystander to cut their 
throats with a sword," Nor does he omit to mention 
that the bravest, like the corypha2us of a chorus, sat 
in the middle, the giver of the entertainment being 
seated next him. 

Diodonis Siculus, who lived in the later part of fhe 

' KZ. 26, 555. Orgaín Brudm Dá Dergae, Táin B6 Cuainge, 
' Cath Ruiss na Ríg, Serglige Conculaind. 

' Atheníeus, Book iv. c. 40. Atbenseus was born in Egypt ; 
some portion of his work "The Deipnosophists " was written after 
A.D, 228. Posidonius the Stoic, an astronomer and geographer 
with whom Cicero studied at Rhodes, and who had travelled in 
Westem Europe, is the authorÍty quoted on this old Celtic cuslom ; 
TÍ !í iraXiIiói- (»101» íri Kiii\-fyHiiv TÍ /ijj/jíoí i xpaTitrBS 
Í^a/ífianr- 4i ií rii iTípm diTíiriiiijtrairo avríaTovTO ii,iiroiuix^<i<"Ttí /téxp' 


first century, after having mentioned the Celts as tall 
and red-haired, notes that at feasts they were attended 
by young boys and girls. "Near at hand they have 
their chinineys, with their fires well furnished with 
pots and spits full of whole joints oí flesh meat, and 
the best and fairest joints in a way of due honour and 
regard they set before the persons of best quality, as 
Homer introduces the Grecian captains entertaining 
Ajax when he returned victor from his single combat 
with Hector."' 

That such honour-portions occasioned the greatest 
rivalry among the Celtic champions we know for 
certain írom Pusidonius.^ And the carrying away 
oí the champion's portion from Ihe person to whom 
it belonged was one oí the crimes taken account of 
by the ancient Brehon Law, according to which the 
fine was fixed at double the champion's portion or 
honour-price.' This love of precedence on the part 
oí the Irish could lind its parallel in Nestor's 
promise, as reward of bravery to the Grecian leader 

' See " I!ia.d," Book vii. 320-321 : — 

" Td Ajax then Ehe chine's continuous length 
As honour's meed the mighty monarch gave." 

■'i&Towu' S' Alawa SíijrrxéiiTiri yépcupci' 
ffput 'ATpetSrjtj ebpi xpeíiúv 'Á-ytLtíifj,9Wf. 
' itXTDi ^aíii More rapí To Síirrot nonnaxaiiaLf ir yap tmi SrXon 
íytp8BiTti axíaitaxo^^' *al rpiit i.Wii\o\rt diip0XE'^f°*''<"> ^'"'^ ^^ '"' f-ixpt 
TpauwoTM rpotaní caj ÍK toítou ipeSmBhiTeí iav nJj iriaxú^iv il rapSvTet 
mil íui évaipéafui IpxovTai, In AthenEeus, ed. Miiller, Fragmenta 
fíisl. Grac. iii. 259-260. 

Cf. the words of DÍodoras ; eiiieaoi Si rapi t4 {tírtvv . . . ík 
irpOJcXi}iríwt /loPOíittj;'"' 'P^' i^^ií^ooi Tnp' eííiv TiSé/itroi riit tSb /SÍou 
Te\evT*p'—cha.p. xxviii. g 5, cd. MuIIer, i. p. 271. 

' " Ancient Laws of Ireland," vol. i, p. 181. 



who should enter the Trojan camp to learn the 
secrets, that "high should be his place at banquets 
and at solemn feasts." Nay, a chine of well-íed hog^ 
is specially mentioned in Homer, while a caldron is 
one oí the prizes in the contest of the flying cars. 
A further reference to honour portions of meat at 
the feasts of the Gael of old is given Ín the note on 
the word larach (§ 20). I believe that some report a 
somewhat similar custom as in vogue Ín Abyssinia. 
The attention bestowed upon their guests both by 
Méve and by Blathnat involuntarily remind one of 
Hector's wife causing her maids to put caldrons on 
the fire to prepare the warrior's warm bafh on his 
return from war.^ The ways of the heroines were 
those of early times, when a Nausikaa and her maidens 
could yet wash clothes by the river-side, a scene which 
Ís the charm of the " Odyssey." 

From time immemorial the feast has been loved 
by all peoples. Bacchus, it was íelt, loved not bad men 
nor unínstructed clowns. One has only to recalt the 
classic reference to the feast given to Ihe Celts of 
Gaul by Lyernius, the father of Bityis, who enclosed 
a fenced space twelve furlongs square, where any one 
who chose was invited to go and enjoy what was 
there prepared. The etiquette of the banquet is not 
íully detailed in the feast of Bricriu, but serving-men 
(spencers, distributors) were present, which put one 

' ICÍJtAfTO !' i.iiJJinro\ 

dXm^.— IlÍadix. 2d8. 

Ín mind oí the account AthenaBus gives of the Gauls, 
among whom the cup-bearers brought round the wine 
in cask-shaped jars made either of earthenware or 
of silver, fhe meat being served on platters, some of 
which were brazen, some wooden, some being plaited 
baskets. In Ireland in rauch later times, if we may 
trust Derriclte's account, wooden vessels, not pewter, 
were the rule. 

Good malt beer was the staple drink Bricriu pro- 
vided for his guests ; lo some were given " generous 
wines from the lands of France." Wine might well 
have been there. In the " Book of Armagh " account of 
St. Patricfc (fol. 4. 6. 2) we find vinum in palalio Temo- 
rite, "wine in the palace of Tara," and King Loigaire 
is spoken oí as drinking wine there. The fact of 
wine being mentioned among the constituents of the 
champion's portion (§ 9) does not militate against 
the date I have assigned the language of the existing 
text. In the old Irish short version of the "Wooing 
of Emer," which Professor Kuno Meyer assigns to 
the eighth century, we read that Forgall Manach, 
father of Emer,' went in a Gaulish garb, as if it were 
an embassy írom the king of the Gauls to confer 
with Conchobar, with an offering to him of golden 
treasures and wine of Gaul. Professor Meyer rightly 
sees here "a voice from the oldest period of Irish his- 
tory, when Gall was used in its original sense of Gallus, 
a Gaul." The phrase di órdúisib 7 fin Gall becomes 
changed in the later version to di órdúisib Finngall, 

1 Emer was a Dame cuiTent among old Iríshwomen ; thos in 
" St. PatricWs Life " we have " the two Emers " spoken of. 


"with an ofFering to him of gotden treasures of the Nor- 
wegians," for the redactor, finding that Norse wine 
would make no sense, deleted the conjunction, and 
made fín Gall into Finngall. The distributors no 
doubt went round from right to left, as Ís still pre- 
ferred by many íollts in the Highlands and in Ireland. 
Athen^eus say5 the Gauls all drank at feasts out of the 
same cup, "the hquor being carried round írom right 
to left, always turning towards the right hand, the 
way in which they worshíp the gods." It is, more- 
over noticeable, that the wheaten cakes were cooked 
with honey. The Gauls often pnt honey into their 
malt beer, called corma, a word still living in raodern 
Gaelic cuirm, also cuilm, signifying feast. 

The word fled also Ís a thoroughIy native word for 
feast or banquet, not yet discarded, being cognate 
with Cymric gwledd, older guled, "pompíe," Greek 
ei\aTrívr], " feast," Lat. vohtptas, OHG. weío, Mid. 
Ger. welede, perhaps with English well. Thoroughly 
native too is the term íor " champion's portion," 
curad-mir. The Gaulish cavaros passed into Greek as 
•eavapú<i,^ a word of which there are several spellings. 
A prince so calted flourished at the commencemeut 
of the second century b.c. Under the Romans the 
Cavares are a people of Gaul ; Cavarinus is a king's 
name in Cíesar,* Cavarillus Ís an ^duan chief,' — all 
which words are cognate as to root with Cymric 
cawr, " giant," Greek x^pioi, " lord," Sanskrit ^avira, 
"mighty," f«rcr, "a hero." It meets us in a proper 


naiTie as early as the third century B.C., when it 
borne by a Gaiil who took part in an expedition 
to Asia Minor. \Ve may be sure thaf the virtue it 
denofes was highly prized among the Celts, on whom 
íell the worlt of conquering and assimilating the 
hostile races which they met with as the first wave 
of fhe Aryan migration westwards. 

HeroÍsm ! Bravery ! 

Only tke brave can receive help. 

Such is the spirit of our saga, wherein kings, nay, 
demigods and heroes, with their queens and courtiers, 
hve, if under the shadow of the supernatural, yet in 
the light of the real world. One of the most notable 
reniaining monuments of Irish phantasy of over a 
thousand years ago, the saga as a whole, as we have 
it, is conceived in a romantic, slightly parodistic vein, 
which presupposes an earlier version of the tale. If 
I have endeavoured to assign the language as we have 
it in its oldest strata to the last quarter of the ninth 
century, from the content of the saga itself, 1 am 
bound to state that it may, in a less romantic form, 
have belonged to a very primitive stage of Gaelic 
story-te!ling. With a realism true to fact, the wild and 
the grotesque are intermingled, here and there crossed 
with a vein of broad primitive humour, in keeping 
with the rougher, if withal nalve and siraple childhood 
of the world. Amid the wildest freaks of phantasy, the 
main síress is upon fairpla^, a testimony to a native 
love for justice inherent in the people. "A wifling 
will give judgment, but who will give justice,"* is stiU 

' " Biieir buidire breith ach co bheir ceartas." 



a living Gaelic proverb. If here we find a portrailure 
oí character which loves combat for the sake of gIory 
and adventure, it loves it rauch more íor the Bake of 
fair-p]ay and of justice. If the chief Iiero is sometimes 
easily dispirited, the element of danger and of the 
unfcnown is for him powerfully attractive. Over all 
is reflected the spirit of an indomitable personalÍty. 
Native wit and ways are here almost realistically 
mirrored, but it wiU be íound true that " the lake is 
not burdened by its swan, nor a steed by its bridle, 
nor a man by the soul that is in him." A friend's eye 
is the best looking-glass. 

From the seventh to the tenth century Gaeldom 
played a not unimportant part in European history, 
producing teachers and travellers who in their day 
were unexcelled.* A series of disasters then followed, 
which arrested the national literary progress at a stage 
which was almost priraitive. Other developments of 
high value were to íollow, lyric, epic ballad, and folk- 
tale, rich in beauty and in incident, and therewith 
the rise of the Finn-Ossian Saga. Happily, the older 

' Men like St. Columba, Columbanus, John Scotus Erig«na, 
can never be quite forgotten in the history of the West "Let us 

not forget that the Irish, from the seventh to the tenth century, 
were the schoohnasters of Europe, that they taught Latin grammat 
in Paris, Liittich, St. Gallen, Pavia, Bobbio ; that not less than 
fourmanuscripts of Priscian, written in Ireland at the beginning 
of the ninth century, were brought to the Conlinent, where, in spite 
of the fortunes of a thousand years, they are preserved— at Leyden, 
Carisruhe (from Reichenau), St. Gallen, Milan (from Bobbio)."— 
Professor Zimmer of Greifswald, Prussia, in KZ. 30, 256 ; cf^ his 
fuUer historical survey ; Dber die Bedeutung des irischen Eletnents 
fiir die mitielaltírliche Kultur ii.e. On the significance of the Irish 
element for Media;val culture). — Preussische Jahrbíicher, 59, 27-59. 


saga of Cuchulainn was to all Íntents already closed. i 
Though the Cehic conquest was complete, the nation 
was not of one blood, nor were the tribes firmly 
united under one central all-controlling hand. Other 
elements of discord were ío follow. The last great 
king íell, but his spirit was attuned to the infinite. 
"O God! ..." said Brian, "refreat becomes us 
not, and I myself know I shall not leave this place 
alive ; and what would Ít profit rae Íf I did ? For 
Aibhell of Craig Liath (the guardian family spirit of 
the Dál Cais) came to me last night, and told me that 
I should be killed this day," ^ 

Oue may not attempt to raise the- dead to life, 
not even to galvanise their words. To develop their 
heritage is a duty Íncumbeiit upon all ; if there be 
aught of worth worthily developed, it will command 
the admiration of all. Despite long unhappiness, after 
much neglect, yet still through an unbroken tradition, 
the sea-divided Gaels, whose hearts, wide as they roam, 
pine for Tír na n-Og, Land of the Ever Young, may 
at length attain to a deeper understanding of their 
own life, with its roots far and firm in the past, and, 
in virtue of a national longing, may enable that past 
to resume its course, to attain to fuller and higher 
expression. Scotia, major et minor, must aim at 
intellectual progress and dominion, must seek after 
self-understanding. One of the best helps in this 
endeavour I conceive to be a rendering of her oldest 
sagas and romances, in as fitting a form as possible, 

' Cogaah Gaedhel Re Gallaibh, p. : 

Craig^ Liath=Grey 


accessible to the catholic brotherhood oí letters. 
The desire to tell stories and to hear them is equally 
inherent in the savage and in the highest sovereign. 
Great art is never out of date, miich less art which 
embodies the consciousness of a race. Humanity is 
marvellous. The path to life is through development 
of what is worthy in our heritage. The best in every 
one is thus ripened. In this belief I submit this tale 
as an example of old worltmanship, more especially 
for those who reatise that they are heirs of tradition 
and sprung from the past in body and in mind. 
"Our dead are never dead to us until they are for- 
gotten." Nor have I rendered it for the dead but 
for the living, Itnowing that one day under some sky 
not necessarily mine, some one niay be found who 
in this department also will say with Michael Angelo 
in his ripe wisdom, " I go yet to school that I may 
continue to learn." 

Symptoms oí willingness are not absent. The 
old national music is being studied ; there has been 
essayed even a Scoto-Celtic opera. But no proper 
foundation can be laid without a full knowledge of 
the Cuchulainn Saga, the cycle which reveals the 
mind of the old Scotic nobles and people, Here 
we meet the Aryan Celt in his most distinctive mood, 
here if anywhere we have the Gael. The British 
branch of the Celtic peoples has a!ready contribufed 
its quota to our literary commonwealth. If, not 
to speak of sacred books, we blot out the name of 
Arthur and of his fcnights, how much of what is 
highest and raost illustrious would disappear from 


the English literature of Britain! "One niay assume 
with sorae confidence that the names, and even the 
outlines of action and character, in the Anglo-Norman 
romances are of Celtic origin, and represent vague 
recollections of history preserved by the oral tradi- 
tion of the tribes." ^ 

In helping towards a further acquaintance with 
the Cuchulainn Saga one is strengthened in the sure 
knowledge that here we have no dead and dull reite- 
ration of themes colourless and outworn. The very 
strangeness of the characters may serve to stiraulate 
the imagination. The love of beauty and of action, 
the ample variety of character and oí incident, the 
Idnship wiih the unltnown and superhuman, the sug- 
gestiveness of its broodings upon the other world, 
its natural magic in its efíort to escape tlie circle of 
the íinite — the broken bUss oí the idyll — all render 
it many-toned. The spirit does not bid us merely 
to "go back to the isle of Finn and siiffer the past 
to be past,"* but beckons us to the worid of heroes, 
to Mag Mell of many flowers, "a magic land and 
fuU of song ; primrose is the hue of the hair, snow- 
white the fair bodies, joy in every eye, the colour of 
the foxglove in every cheek." " Fair is that land to 
all eternity beneath ifs snow-fall of blossoms. . . . The 
gleaming walls are bright with many colours, the 
plains are vocal with joyous cries, mirth and song 
are at home on the plain, the silver-clouded one, 
No waiting there íor judgment, nought but sweet 

' Courthope's " HÍstory of English Poetry," vol. Í. p. ii?. 
' Tennyson in " Voyage of Maelduin. ' 


ío be heard. No pain, no grief, no death, no 
discord, Such is the land." ' 

The hero in this tale, the after-glow of a splendour 
already dying, raay step forth largely as a tribal chatn- 
pion, riot yet elevated like King Arthur to a type of 
Christian heroic valour, Others of his coiintrymen, 
like CoIum-CiUe, airaed at that and achieved it. It 
has its own Ínterest in the history of culture to know 
Cuchulainn as he is — heros fortissimus Scotoruvi, the 
mightiest hero of the Scots. My prayer is that he 
may one day with the Court of the Red Branch 
enrich the heroic dramatic genius of Britain. For I 
trust that some are at hand who have imbibed 
the inner aspirations oí the Gael, who wiU mould 
thera anew to fresh gÍory through victories of ascent, 
being invisibly anointed and at one with all that is 
worthy in the Gaelic past, who know its power and 
will say of it from the heart : 

" No, I belong to the tree, I shall not decay in the shadow ; 
Yes; and I feel the life-juices of all the world and ihe 

' See Macdougall's "Folk and Hero Tales," inirod, by Nutt. 



The Manuscripts are five in number : — 

I. LU. Leabhar Na H-Uidhri, "The Book of the 

Dun [Cow] : " a coUection of piecea in prose and verse 
in the Irish language, corapiled and transcribed about 
iioo A.D. by Moelmuiri Mac Ceileachair. Published 
in facaimile by the Royal Irish Academy, Dublin, 
1870. Thc present tale occupies pp. 9o''-ii2b of the 
facsimile, The scribe seems to have had an eerie 
feeling when he came to copy the description of the 
giants, and above page 105* he wrote in Latin (no 
doubt piously crossing himself) 1« dei nomine ; and 
again, in dei nomine, Amen, above page 112''. Nothing 
could more clearly illustrate the difference in feeling 
between the good Culdee of Clonmacnois and the 
original author of the Feast of Bricriu. It indicates 
further a difference of date. The gloss in section 15, 
to the effect that Conchobar was forraerly an Ultonian 
divinity, did not, in all lifcelihood, originate with Moel- 
muiri, but with an earlier compiler. The scribe's 
grandfather, who died in 1059, was íounder of a 
community of Culdees in connection with the great 
schooi founded about the year 544 by St. Ciaran, in 
a curve of the Shannon at Clonmacnois — justly famed 
for love of learning and for piety. He was a man of 
such eminent and high wallt, that he came to be 
lcnown as Conn of the Poor (Cotin iiam Bocht), That 


he should name one of his sons Cele-ckar, i.e. " Ciildee- 
loving," is pvobabie from his ecclesiastical connection. 
He was predeceased by his son Maolfinden ; another 
son, Maelciarain, died abbot of Clonmacnois in 1079 ; 
another son, Gilchrist (Gillachrist), passed away Ín 
1085 with the repute oí being the best cleric in Erin ; 
yet another son, Cormac, died abbot oí Clonmacnois 
in logg, This last son in 1089 bought over Isel 
Ciarain, "St. Ciaran's Hospital," which his father in 
1031 negotiated for on behalí of the poor, who got 
twenty cows from Conn hiniself, whose name was wetl 
lcnown in Scotland : 

A chuinn Chluana atclos tu a hErind in nAlbain, 

A chind ordain, nochan usa do chiU dargain. 
" Oh 1 Conn of Cluny, thou'st been heard of from Erin 

to Alba, 
Thou art head of an order, thy church is not easy 

to plunder." 
Conn's own father, Joseph, died as anamchara, "soul- 
friend" or confessor, of Clonmacnois, Ín 1022. 
Joseph's íather, Dunchadh-son-of-Dunadach, reader 
of Clonmacnois, died Ín 1005 ; Dunadach himself died 
as bishop of Clonmacnois in 953. 

The bishop's brofher, Oenacan, died in 947 as 
archdeacon of Ecclais bec in Clonmacnois, where his 
father, Egertach, who died in 893, was archdeacon. 
Both the brothers were brought up by Caenchomrac 
oí Inis-Endoimh, who was bishop and abbot of 
Lughmadh [epscop 7 abb Lughmhaidh]. There also 
died Ín Clonmacnois in 845 Egertach's grandfafher, 
Eoghan, anchorite of Clonmacnois, the son of Aeda- 
can, the son of Torbach. Eoghan's father, Aedacan, 
abbot of Louth, died while on a pilgrimage to Clon- 


macnois' in 834, and his son Eoghan remained in 
Clonmacnois. Torbach,the father of Aedacan,abbot oí 
Louth, was scribe, lector and abbot oí Armagh * in 807. 
Torbach's father, Gorman, abbot oí Louth (Gorman 
comharba Mochta Lughmhaigh), died on pilgriraage 
in Clonmacnois Ín 753. He was not the lirst Gorman 
who died thus. "The Four Masters" at the year óio 
speak oí one Gorman from whom came the Mic 
Cuinn. He lived for a year on the water of FÍngin's 
Well, and died on his pilgrimage Ín Clonmacnois.' 
To the Hke effect the "Chronicum Scotorum," under 
the year 615, while the extant English version of the 
"Annals of Clonmacnois" íor the year 613 state : 
"This year carae in pilgrimage to Cionvicknose one 
Gorman, and reraained there a year, and fasted that 
space on bread and the water oí Fynin's well. He 
is the ancestor to MÍc Connemboght and Moynter-. 
Gorman, and died in Clone aforesaid." * 

So rauch for the pedigree of the scribe oí the " Book 
of the Dun Cow." His untimely death is reporfed in 
the "Annals of the Four Masters" under the year 
1106 A.D, : " Maolmuire, son of the son oí Conn of 

• V. "The Four Masters" under the year 834 ; Aodhagan mac 
Torbaigh abb Lucchmaidlt decc ina ailefhre hi cCluain Mic Noisj 
Eoghan mae AedhagSin roansidhe hi cClutiin Mic Nois conadk 
uadha rochimet Meic Cuinn nambccht iníe. 

' Hc was primate for one year, according to the " Psalter of 
Cashel," a work now lost except in extracts j it seems to have 
cxisied as lale as thc seventeenth century (■z'. Hyde's " LÍterary 
History of Ireland," p. 266=). 

' Gormiin do Mughdhornaibh d ttsd Meic Cuinn, asi roboi 
bliadain for uisce Tiobrait Finghin 7 itia aiiithre i Cluain Mic 
Nois atbath, 

' Spelling slightly modernised from MacGeoghan's translation 
of the "Annals of Clonmacnois," editcd by Father Mutphy. 
Dublin, 1896. 



the Poor, was Itilled on the floor of the calbedral' 
(ar lar doimhliacc) of ClonmacnDÍs by pluaderen." 

In such a centre of letters, whence in tbe ntnlh 
century valuable documents, sucb as Ibe Carbnlie 
manuscript of Bede, were brought to Uáebtavt, on 
Lake Constance, there must have been a lídl VbrMj.* 
On page 37 of the Ll/ facs.iiiii]e tbere ■> aa tnbj: 
Prayfor Moelniuiri, the son of Cálechar, ir, itw tm ^ 
theson of Conn of the Poor, wk» wreie amd eeBttUé tUt 
book from various books. From tbe toae ot fa» mimd, m 
evidenced by the marginal aata refcsTed to, M «dl 
as from other intenul ewdcace, 'tt m JnpoHMe 
that he compiJed the Peast a< Bcicrín. He <ÍMfÍy 
copied an old recension bdbrc Iml We ammH nf 
with full certainty, I fbíiilL, «bo die etmféa «í Ém 
L U recension was. Tjmamr b cfie tta il wm V)mm «á 
Monasterbotce (Fbnd Maiiiíitrcdb). O0 a Mm tá 
LU, recordíng the deafb aod hvíal tá tSxéá, Íl i> 
stated that Fiann and Eochaád OX^rla " 
made this collectíoa from Ae iBaaiHerífl» «< I 
O'Flandacan ío Anna^ and froHi tt« ■a— uirt^ 4tf 
Monasterboice, aad from otter «dictod «MMBOrÍpti^ 
«^. the VeOow Booií o< >lnn^ ^ m Vhm Bmé 
testo asincarcar ia AfámaOa), Ifec tfcort 0m|( iLt*' 
bhar Gerr) of MofUttefboíec^ «ttdl » HWífa» fcv# 
taken in tfaeft acroi» dbe «e^ and «feítii M» «ewcr 
afterwsrds foond (útaide rme ímmK l^fmé /eú letftM 
darm$iir 7 mifiiA rÍM ^ eáfy. 116^ fbmA mmt 1ttttf0 
of Hooasterbaice^ aad íortmm fftítmm ma»% Hm 

• See Pein^s* 

eaxK. For n sivrmím «# *c « 

SufccA " Life «r Gm^ tad&' 



Gael in knowIedge of manuscripts, oí history, of 
poetry and of philosophy. His death toolc place on 
the a^th November 1056. If he was fhe compiler of 
the LU recension of the Feast of Bricriu, he con- 
fessedly had inanuscripts before him, and írom the 
blunders he committed, and which Moelmuire per- 
petuated, I should infer the document was getting 
faded, At any rate, the tale has traces oí the handi- 
work of such a man as Flann, who was to a great 
extent an antiquary. This is seen chiefly in fhe ar- 
rangement of the several recensions of which the L U 
version is a compound. But the Egerton version, 
though from a different redaction to that of LU, 
has the beginning of the Emain-Curoi recension 
(§§ 29-32) equally early, and this renders it likely that 
we have to do with the work of some pen of eariier 
date than FJajin. 

2. Eg. The Egerton Manuscript, 93 in the British 
Museum. The beginning of the tale as far ^sforécrad 
do Bricrind fácbáil 'wi \ 13 is lacking. This codex is a 
vellum quarto of thirty-live folios in double columns, 
forty-five lines in each column. It has been described 
by Sfokes in the "Tripartite Life of St. Patrick" 
(Introd. p. xlv.) and by 0'Curry, The first nineteen 
folios were written in 1477 by Domnall Albanach 
O'TroÍghti, and the reraaining folios are written, as 
0'Curry notes, Ín three diíferent hands, and apparent!y 
at different subsequent periods. Then follows (folio 
19«) the Hymn of St. Patricfc, and a short religious 
tract, illegible at the end. On folio loa begins the 
íragraent of Fled Bricrend. It has been already 
coUated by Windisch, but I have added some further 
variants from my own reading of the codex, Folio 
ita fo the end contains a fragmenf of the Táin bó 


Cúailnge, as Stoltes correctly remarlts, Ín a large 
coarse hand. 

3. H, Manuscript H. 3-17, Trinitjr College, Dublin 
(sixteenth ceiitury), It contains the same order as 
Eg, and has the beginning complete. It brealcs off 
at what is section 40 oí the LU arrangement. It is 
important as containing certain transitions which the 
compiler oí LU sacrificed to his own more clumsy 
handling oí the written texts before him. These 
transitions are noted in this edition in their proper 
place. H sometimes has preserved a more correct 
reading than LU, and, lilte Eg, represents a recen- 
sion independent of L U. 

4. Ii. The Leyden University Manuscript — Ts Vosii 
cod. lat. quart. No. 8 (sixteenth century). It is fully 
described by Dr. Stern in Revue Celtique, xiii. 1-31. Its 
ancient possessor, Isaac Voss, no doubt acquired it in 
Britain in the later part of the seventeenth century. 
Its text Í5 careless, and onIy by balancing its evidence 
aiongside of Eg and H can it throw any light on the 
difficult passages. It more often agrees with H than 
with Eg, but Ít represents the redaction which is that 
of Eg and of H, as against that of L U. 

5. Ed. Edinburgh Gaelic MS. XL., a vellum quarto 
having five layers of different origin and of dififerent 
dates, It contains a complete copy of the Mesce Ulad, 
of the Táin Bó Fráich and of seven Aideda or Death- 
Tales of the Cuchulainn cycle. On the right-hand 
margin of page 12 is written misi Domhnalt. Portions 
oí the MS. may have been written Ín the fourteenth, 
certainiy in the fifteenth century. This is the only 
línown codex which contains the latter portion of 
Fled Bricrend complete, and is of unique import- 
ance. But its text is most careless in point of spelling. 


and seems to belong to tlie sixteenth century, though 
the scribe no doubt modernised from an older MS. 
uow lost. Its connection with Fled Bricrend was first 
correctly noted by Professor Kuno Meyer in the 
Revue Celíigue (vii., 113, and 191), He afterwards 
more ínlly described it in the Celiic Magazine íor 
March 1887, pp. 208-218, and again in the Revue 
Celtiqtte (xiv., pp. 450-459) hc published in 1893 the 
Edinburgh version of Cennach Ind Rúanaáo, i.e. sec- 
tions 91-102 of the tale, with a translation of these 
sections into English. The text here is in some 
places iilegible, and though I twice coUated his most 
careful transcript with the manuscript, I íound these 
letters irapossible to malce out. I have followed 
Professor Meyer's plan in giving the Edinburgh fext 
with its orthographical pecuHarÍties as they stand, I 
have followed my own previous translation of these 
sections, but have compared his, and adopted from it 
whenever it seemed an iraprovement. Meyer notes 
that the text agrees with Eg against that of L U. 

I have oíten corrected the reading of ZÍ7 in its 
own light, and in the light of these MSS., wherever 
it seemed possible or desirabíe, but as the text oí LU 
is itself compiled from older documents, and belongs 
to a transition period, I have not harmonised the 
forms either in nouns or in verbs, or even in the 
article, as the variations are useful iandmarks in 
textual criticism, and seem to characterise a fransi- 
tional linguistic stage. Wherever the text is cor- 
rected, the manuscript readings are given at the íoot, 

To Professor Windisch's Irische Texle mií Worter- 
buch I once for all acknowledge my indebtedness. 
It contains the text of sections 1-94 of the tale, with 
coUations from Eg and H. 1 have followed, fhough 


not entirely, his paragraph arrangement, while in the 
division into chapters I have had Professor Zimmer's 
criticisms in Ruhtís Zeitschrift to guide me, and wish 
to acfcnowledge specially the help and stimulus ob- 
tained from his various grammatical and literary 
studies, more minutely speciíied throughout. 

Order of the Versions. 

LU. Eg. H. L. Ed. 

1-27 ...13-27 1-27 1-27 




2 8» 

















58 {beginning) 







73 (^«^-74 


33-40 . . . 





91-94... 91-94... 91-94... 91-102 

The blaclc lines denote that the missing sections form no part 
of the recension or compilation concerned. 

* Abridged. 

t " II y manque . . un feuillet entre fol. 6 et foL 7, qui contenait 
le texte du chapitre 58 á partir des mots no tái^ ol si, jusqu'aux 
mots conid limsa in caurathmir dans le chapitre 73." — Stem in 
RC. 13, 23. 



• O 














Í2 3 























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S -2 

§ S S o ti 
- !1 c ^ "E 



q- s| « 1 

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*■ S 5 í, 4 

8 0) 

í| .| || 


s Í 



Í " 







1 ú 
S U 


í S 8 < s 

^ 1 " -1 1 '^ 


" í S 1 s 







S ^ 

F * 

^ ,8 * ^ 

K £ 


1 n 

1 * 

" íí, ié 

4 J; 



&S 1 

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n!iTv-a3!Bjp"a ^a 


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Chapter xiv. is not only a doublet to xvi. (the 
beheading game), but refers to araili libair, other 
manuscripts, in a way which proves that the com- 
piler of the version which we have 'm LU had two 
varying recensions before him, Conall and Loigaire 
said they would not agree to Terror's ( Uath'i) arrange- 
ment, for it would be impossible for them to Hve aíter 
having been beheaded, although he might. Therefore 
they decHned ; alíhough other books narrate that they 
agreed to the bargain, to wit, Loigaire to cut off Terror's 
head the first day, and {on lke giant's retuming) that 
Loigaire shirhed his part of íhe bargain, and that Conall 
likewise behaved unfairly (§ 77). The compiler oi LU 
uses the other books, for this whole episode (§§ 75-78) 
is absent from Eg, H, L. It was dropped so as to 
allow of but one beheading garae, and in this respect 
shows greater skill than that oí the compiler oíLU. 
The same desire for consistency on the part of the 
compiler of the parent-version of Eg-H-L is seen in 
§ 31, where he substitutes Dun Rudraige for Emain. 
Inasmuch as this compiler put chapters vi., vii. after 
xiii., the starting from Emain presupposed in vii. suits 
quite weli — the return to Emain being expressly men- 
tioned in §§ 39, 40. H expressly at the end oí § 62 
(=beginning of § 72 in that version) spealís of a 
return to Emain, which is really an incon5Ístency on 
the part of H, and shows that Íts compiler aimed at a 
harmony oí two varying recensioiis. But the con- 
tradiction is too great for such a change as the mere 
substitution of Dun Rudraige for Emain (§ 31) to 
sufíice. Cuchulainn had set out for Dun Rudraige in 
high spirits, and has shown he would contest the 
Champion's Portion against any and everybody (g 11); 
he did not hesitate to contend for it against Conall 


and Loigaire combined (§ 15) ; in the course of the 
feast he upheaved the palace tiU the stars were visible 
írom underneath the wattle (§ 25), and it was found 
that he alone could set it uprighf (§ 28, beginning). 
How can he say almost in the next words that he is 
tired and broken and cannot hold a duel with any 
one (§ 31): "to eat and to sleep it liketh me better 
than everything"; that on that day he had wrestled 
with his steed, the Grey of Macha, and came chasing 
into Emain at evening (§ 31), having made a circuit of 
the chief plains of Erin ? It was the intention of the 
compiler of the Eg-H-L redaction to smooth over as 
many inconsistencies as possible. 

Another clear proof of compilation is the uncer- 
tainty on the part of Zí/which is seen in § 41, where 
we are told that the heroes were sent either to seek 
Curoi mac Dairi or AÍIill and Méve at Cruachan ! 
Against this, Eg in § 41 mentions Sencha as asking 
them to go to Curoi mac Dairi, which suits the inten- 
tion of this corapiler, as Eg-H-L give §§ 33-41 imme- 
diately before the expedition to Curoi, whereas LU 
begins with the progress [hosting] oí the Ultonians 
to Cruachan, where it is expressly stated — Eg also 
agreeing — that the heroes set out from Dun Rudraige 
(§ 43). I believe that in g 41 the Eg compiler has 
tampered less with the recension which stood beíore 
him, and fo a certainty had ali the incidents of the 
Emain-Curoi narrative in sequence. Z.Í7and L break 
ofE with the Emain-Curoi narrative at the end oí the 
same sentence (§ 94), but the parent narrafive cannot 
have been deíective here, for Eg continues for some 
twenty-four lines íurther, now almost wholly ilJegible. 
The Emain-Curoi recension must have been shortened 
considerably at the beginning. It is curious to see 


hovv two compilers worfciiig independently insert 
§§ 29-32 in the sarae place 1 Further, the redactor of 
the LU compilation took the title from the Dun 
Rudraige-AiHll recension. Thus on the margin of LU 
the title of the second portion, viz. incurathmir Emtta 
Macha (the Champion's Portion oí Emain Macha), is 
lactcing ; and so, too, cennach indruanada (the Cham- 
pion's Covenant) is laclting on the margin opposite 
to what corresponds with chap. xiv. of our division. 
Something hlce this stood there in the Dun RudraÍge- 
Ailill recension, and the compiler oi LU has put 
cennach indruanada inso (the Champion's Covenant 
here) opposite chap. xvi,, although his text from the 
EmaÍn-Curoi recension has cotánic cennach indruanada 
IN Emain Macha. He was clever enough to notice the 
difference afterwards, and as a fact the words in Emain 
Macha are superscribed above the title in L U, gg*", 2. 

There are especial discrepancies in the LU ndxvz- 
tive as to AÍlil! and Méve's behaviour in the awarding 
cf the prize. There are two versions interwoven in 
somewhat exfernal fashion, and they are irreconcilable. 
According to the one account, each of the three chief 
heroes, during the stay in Cruachan, stays in a house 
apart (§ 54) ; according to the other, they are staying 
"together, for there is no meaning in the account in 
§ 57, save on the presupposition that the three heroes 
are passing the night in the same room oí the palace. 
Had chap. ix. originally foUowed upon chap. viii., we 
should have expected some explanation as to the change 
of arrangement respecting the stay of the heroes. Chap. 
xi., however, is in accord with chap. viii,, f or each of the 
three chief heroes has a house apart. In chap. ix. Conall 
and Loigaire are pictured as cowards; the absurdity 
oi their situation is depicted with grim heroic humour 



that is genuinely Irish. TheÍr protest against the 
validity of the proofs is of like nature. In chap. x. AÍIill 
takes the decision in hand and finds it difficult, where- 
upon Méve comes to his aid to give judgment, 
although it is really a íurther proof that is expected, 
For according to LU, judgment has been already 
given. It is needJess to discuss the p5ychological 
development, inasrauch as § 57 {i.e. ix.) is absent from 
all the compilations save that of LU. Psycho!ogically, 
chap. X. is only thinkable as íoJlowing upon chap. xi., 
for there Loigaire and Conall mistake mock-laughter 
íor real applause, whereas Cuchulainn takes real 
applause for mock-laughter. No wonder he is dis- 
posed to set aside what seems to him cannot be other 
than Méve's lying flattery (| 61). The fine irony of 
the affair could not be better brought out, and as a 
fact, Eg and L have chap. xi. before chap. x. Again, 
in chap. xi. the heroes have a house apart {§ 63) which 
we must imagine to be the case in chap. x. where 
Méve calls upon Cuchulainn (§ 61). Chaps. viii., xi., 
X. form a sort oí unity in this order, which is that of 
Eg and of L against L U, 

Whence then came chap. ix. ? It contains a test 
which Conall and Loigaire could not recognise. They 
naturally claim a further test. This behaviour was 
welt fitted to inspire Ailill with fear; he felt it would 
be very difficult for him to get them to abide by any 
verdict, while at the same fime he was certain of their 
hatred. The only escape out of the difíiculty was to 
send them íor judgment to some one else. Now the 
contents of chap. xii. admirably harmonise with chap, 
ix., and if we suppose these two chapters to have 
formed part oí a separate recension, it is clear how 
the heroes can answer Ercol (§ 66) that they have 


come íor judgment. For on this view, judgment had 
hitherto not been given. I wauld guard the reader 
here against a possible erroneous surmise. Were 
these Bections not stuck Ín at random írom floating 
materials of folk-Iore by the redactor of the version 
which the transcriber of LU foUowed ? No ! At 
the time of the L U compiler, the saga was fixed in 
manuscript, and we may expect to meet with doublets, 
with interpolations, with attempted harmonies, often 
unsuccessíul, on the part of a clumsy, dry compiler, 
to whom the iniiate sense for story-teIlÍng was not 
at all a second nature ! I take it, accordingly, that 
such a compiler had two versions in manuscript of 
the Dun Rudraige-Ailill recension before him : accord- 
ing to the one version, Meve herself gave ÍÍnal judg- 
ment upon the heroes ; according to the other — and 
no doubt somewhat later version, showing classical 
influence certainly, and Norse influence probably — 
she sent them to Garmna and Ercol. 

The visit to Erool is narrated according to two 
versions. According to the first account, they are 
received by Ercol, who does not give judgment upon 
them, but simply sends them to Samera (§§ 67, 68). 
According to the second account, Ercol challenges 
the heroes to a combat on horsebacfc, and gets worsted 
(§§ 69-71) by Cuchulainn. The second adventure 
ends in a return to Eraain ; the first, although Samera 
speaks of Cuchulainn as cú othair ér Emna (§ 68) has 
no word of a return ío Emain. The opening phrase 
of I 69 : " after that they went to the house of Ercol," 
scarcely warrants one in thinking that the heroes 
visited Ercol a second time on the return journey. 
The hnk '^ after that (iar tam)" is too loose for such 
a specific inference. 


\n an earlier form of this version, the reference to 
Ercol and to the fight on horseback would have been 
wanting ; very probably the expedition to Samera 
and to the Amazons of the Glen (^enniíi glinni) would 
have formed its main contents in thís particular 

Up to a certain point these two versions oí the 
Dun Rudraige-AiliU recension were the same, and 
contained the essential contents of chaps. i., ii., iii,, viii. ; 
then came a variation : the one, instead of f ollowing with 
the contents of chaps. xi., x., xiii., xiv., had the essential 
contents of chaps, ix., xii., xiii., xiv. So far as one can 
at present see, chap, ix, couid at once be followed by 
chap. xii., but some clauses seem to have been missed 
out, The absence of these led to easy confusion on 
the part of the compiler. Perhaps the one repre- 
sented Ailill (§ 58) in an unhappy írarae of mind, not 
knowiug how to give any judgment, whereupon 
Méve came to his aid ; the other version said nothing 
whatever as to his being dispirited, but represented 
him as thinlcing of new tests and further feats of 
trial, when ail of a sudden the energetic Méve, as 
provident lady, stepped in and ordered them off to 
Ercol. On the latter hypothesis, chap, xii., with its 
race-feats, fight with Amazons, and conílict with Ercol, 
would íollow at once after chap. ix. On fhe former 
view, recollecting that chap. xi. [with its account of 
Méve's familiarity with Cuchulainn, and of Cuchu- 
lainn's victory at the wheel-íeat, not to spealc of the 
additional needie-íeat (§ 65)] must precede chap. x., 
as it does in E^ and L, Aihll goes to his chamber 
dispirited, not icnowing what to do, whereupon the 
way is clear for Méve's intervention, and her dodge 
with the cuach (§§ 58-62), But the self-consciousness 


o£ Conalt and of Loigaire stood so high (g 64), that 
each naturally regarded the cuach oí their opponent 
as purchased (§ 74). 

0£ the Ercol-Saraera episode, chaps. xiii, and xiv. 
know nothing. From H chaps. ix., xi., xii. are absent 
altogether. We have thus in all probabiIity to sup- 
pose not less than three variants of the Diin Rudraige- 
AiliU recension alone, viz. : 

A. containing chaps. i., ii,, iii., viii., xi., x., xiii., xiv. 

B. „ „ i., ii,, iii., iv,,viii.,Íx.,xii.,xiii,,xiv. 

C. ,, „ i., ii,, iii., viii., X., xiii., xiv. 
And one raight ask whether there was not at an 

older date a stiU shorter version oí this recension, 
minus the rhythraical speeches — a story with simple 
epÍBodes narrating the testing of Cuchulainn's /^«tJWii/ 
courage. For that iswhat the trial with Uath amounts 
to, The axe business is part of the machinery, with 
no doubt as much basis in phantasy as when children 
are asked to credit the existence of the man Ín the 
moon with an axe in his hand for the sin of cutting 
trees on the Sabbath. Faith is the truth oí fact. 

Zimmer has noted the difference of epithet applied 
to Fedelm in § 28, which is lacfcing in H, L. There 
are two ladies, Fedelm Foltchain and Fedelm Nóicro- 
thach, whereas in the preceding sections of íhe Dun 
Rudraige-Ailill recension, the epithet is several times 
Nóicride (of the íresh heart) : § 28 raay therefore 
come frora variant B. of this recension. The com- 
piler of Eghz.á this variant B. before him, but would 
not in any case destroy the relative harmony which 
existed, as it suited his plan otherwise. May we atso 
regard it as suspicious that in § 72 Dubtach Déeltengad 
takes the place of Bricriu, wherein ií/ and H agree ; 
§ 72 may here show the influence of the C. variant. 



But this Dubtach is elsewhere Itnown for his jealousy 
and evil counsel (v. Huli, i8o), It is to be noted 
that £g; § 72, spells Cuchulainn's father's name with 
a ó (Subaltam) versus mac Sualdaim 'm LU twice 
(§§ 28, 72). Zimmer (K.S. 1. 54«) regards the form 
with d as incorrect ; Rhys has compared Houelt, a 
name on a Welsh inscription of the tenth century. 

WÍth chap. xiv. the Dun Rudraige-AiliU recension 
closed. In place of the words nirdaimseí indfir aili do 
Coinculaind inbreth rodnucad do (LU, iiob, 34, 35), 
came the concluding sentence wherein Cuchulainn 
was solemn]y awarded the Champion's Portion, Uath 
undertook judgment only on condition that the three 
heroes would promise to abide by it, Which they 
did. Then Uath pledged them solemnly (fonasdt 
forró) to the same (§ 76). Whatever variant we follow 
in § 77, Cuchulainn solemnly pledged them not to 
dispute the Champion's Portion with him if he 
entered upon the covenant with Uath, They were 
in honour bound to Iteep to their word. Whosoever, 
says Zimmer, has an idea of what/írT^r (a man's 
word, a man's honour, fairplay) was, and what a 
solemn pledge (nascud, fornascud, fornaidm) meant to 
the Irish heroes — parents, wife, life itself having to 
give place to it — such an one will allow that Loigaire 
and Conall could not dispute the Champion's Portion 
with Cuchulainn after their double pledge. In the 
spirit of Irish saga such knavery were unthinlíable. 
But a dull compiler, whose only anxiety was to patch 
on the remaining pieces of a second recension, could 
have no scruple in paying not the slightest attention 
to this twoíold pledge, 

He will either make a spoon or spoil a horn, 
And thus he converted two of the chief heroes of 



Liiiguistica]ly, §§ 79-94 oí the Emain-Curoi recen- 
sion are on the whole as old as the buik of the Dun 
Rudraige-Aihll recension, certainly older than the 
accretions (chaps. ix, and xii.) met with in one of 
the varíants of that recension. One is assuredly right 
in holding that a tale Uke the Emain-Cnroi story was 
current in Erin during the last quarter of the ninth 
century. For anything to the contrary, 1 see no reason 
why, in the main essentials, it should not orallj/ go 
baclí to the earliest period of Irish saga. Professor 
Windisch, however, is of opinion that the expedition 
to Curoi, while it ra3y in itself be an old saga, does 
not belong to the oldest part of fhe present text, 
Curoi's name not being mentioned in any item of the 
superscripfion. Buf neither is Uath's name specified. 
In this particular it sufficed íor the title to mention 
Cennach ind Ruanada, "The Champion's Covenant," 
which could also include Curoi. It is not at ali likely 
that the magician's name would be mentioned in the 
title. The title, I suppose, would specify, as Ít does, 
in Curathmir Emna Macha, " The Champion's Portion 
of Emain Macha," and it would not therefere be 
necessary fo repeat "in Emain Macha" after "the 
Covenant of the Champion." A feast at Emain is 
presupposed in §§ 29-31. Curious is Windisch's mis- 
construction of the words Liat/t morbrugi (§ 32), which 
he wildly distorts into Liath Morbragi twice {Ir. 
Texte, pp. 248, 252), and franslates " der Graue Gross- 
halsige" which cannot be got from the context, and 
actually is not fhe text, which is morbrugi, "great 
plains" ! Professor Windisch would seemingly seek 
for a purely historic basis for fhe story, and inasmuch 
as the Méve-Uath episode (§§ 75-78) is absent from 
Eg-H and, as we now know, from L, he supposes fhat 



the oldest and original version left the settling of the 
contest solely to the judgment of Méve (§§ 42-65, 
72-74). He is inconsistent with himself in holding 
§S 42-65 as continuous, for on fhe previous page 
{Ir. Texie, p. 248) his behef is that the contents oí 
§§ 72-74 originally followed immediately upon § 62. 
He notes that only §§ 42-65 and 72-74 — putting aside 
§ 57 as being an Ínterpolation — are free of conflicts 
with giants and beasts, presumably, therefore, more 
or less historical. This view is at variance with the 
actual statement Ín § 74 as well as with the whole 
movement of the tale. lí Sencha's wiU was law, he 
could have settled the strife long before. And if 
speculation be here allowable, one might suggest 
that the EmaÍn-Curoi recension began with a feast 
at Emain, where Dubtach Dóeltengad (Duach of the 
Chafer Tongue) took the r61e of Bricriu,— a recension 
which had reminiscences of a version where it was 
Sualdam mac Roig, Cuchulainn's father, who tested 
the valour of his heroic son. This may be a possible 
inference from § 72, and may preserve a really archaic 
feature where the relatíon of the magician to the hero 
was that of father to son,* His own íather may have 
been represented as testing Cuchulainn, who in his 
own turn tested and unwittingly slew his own son 
Conlaoch. I merely throw this out as a suggestion, 

' " This conjecture is supported by the fact that in the Conte 
de! Graal versioa of the beheading episode it is the father who 
tests the son {cf. Miss Weston's " Legend of Sir Gawain," 95, 96). 
At the tiitie ihat Miss Weston was writing her book I had a strong 
impression ihat one of the versions of the Chanipion's Wager Md 
represent Cuchulainn as ihe giant magician's son, and 1 was 
disappointed when, on loolcing up the story again, 1 could not 
verify my supposition." — AlfreD NUTT. 


because the appearance oí Duach of the Chafer 
Tongue in place oí Bricriu, alongside oí the state- 
ment that Sualdam, Cuchulainn's father, was per- 
sonaIIy in attendance upon the Ultonians, seems to 
me to convey as much. 



In siirveying the linguístic forms, with the view of 
ascertaining the oldest possible date at which the main 
body of the present text could have been writtin^ 
the foUowing facts should be kept in view. I take 
account of : — 

The Neuter Gender. 

Traces of the neuter are still visible in the transported n of 
alUth n'oill^ 12 ; <dleth n-aile^ 15 > ^* tech n-óil^ 62, 89 ; fot m- 
aurchara^ 88 ; infecht n-aile^ 88 ; da n-droch^ 45, 47, 50 ; da n^ail 
n-áebda^ 45 ; da n-aii n-dúaicha^ 45, 51 ; Mag m-Breg^ 43 ; tir n* 
Érend^ 31 ; dan-grúad^ 51 ; ^i rigthech n'UÍie^ 20 \fri ed m-biiadna^ 
34 ; a búaid n-oc n-Uiad^ 8 ; iin m-band m'baic-búa^itt^ 22 ; ba 
súcraid arréim ro-n-ucset^ 42, where n is assimilated to r. 

The Article. 

Sg, nom, acc. — The old Gaelic neuter article an is still found in 
a n-dún, 25 ; aiieth^ 12, 15, where the n is assimilated ; issammag^ 
45, 47, 49 ; arrigtech, 55, 15 ; a n-ed, 18, 19 ; isa iech, 3, 20, 25, 88. 

Gen. — The fuller form of the fem. occurs : inna hamsiri sin 
uii^ I ; inna cathrach^ 83 ; but the shorter forms are the usual ones, 
thus na cathrach^ 80. 

Nom, pi, — We have stiU ind for the masc, eg,y ind iaith gaiie^ 
14, 20 ; ind firy 25, 75, 78 ; in trénfir ocus ind iáith gaiie^ 7, 15 > 
ind randaire^ 72, but also in the same section na rondairi; na 
rannaire^ 90 ; na rig ocus na toisig, 28 ; ind rigna^ " the queens," 
28, whereas tair do accailaim . . na rigna (gen. sg. fem.) occurs in 
61 ; § 28 is of later date than some of the others and is absent in 
Eg, The masc. form is here wrongly used for the fem. 



Gin. pi.—The fuller fonn occurs as in the old glosses,í.^., áiwa 
Idth n-gaiU, 3 ; innajer, 17 ; oc cosc inna m-6an,ii) ; inna caurath, 
56 ; but the shorler form also : na tirí, 93 ; na trénfer, S, 13; rta 
rlg ocus na tÓisech acus na láth n-gaile, 6. 

Dat. — The old labial ending of the article is dropped : forsna 
feraib aile, 82. 


We have the km. di : a di 6ois,Í2 ; a ái Íaim, 31, 61,86 (Eg.); 
perhaps in/o rf/ÍJ, 13. 

Also ihe fem. íeora : na teora futhairbe, 17, 22 (bis), 82 ; teora 
aidchi, 57 ; teora aidche, 58, but tri n-aidche, 55, whereas Eg. has 
teora n-oidche. 


The old dat. pl. in -rí is infrequent ; nochtaib, 74 ; ulib, 13 ; co 
comlathaib glainidib, 55. 

The gen. fem. mori occurs with a neuter noun : fer cumachta 
mori, 75, though ciimachte is neuter (v. Hog. p. 190) ; it is correctly 
used in 37, e.g., mdtan maglorci tnsri. 

Gradation. — The following comparatives of equaUty in -dir, 
-thir, occur ; lúathidir, 86 ; lúathithir, 87 ; remithir, 91 ; sithidir, 
100 ; diniíhir, 80 (cf. MI. S7S 12 and 1 13^ 12 (p. 459). 

The Noun. 

Dat. sg.~cona eoch riata iais, 31 ; dá each, 6g ; tteoch, 74, 90 ; 
do neoch, 72 ; dond gillu, 38 ; asin baliu, 88 ; baliu, 56, 88 ; iar 
n-urd, 66 ; in aim, 70 (a form still current with some speakers in 
the Western Isles) ; iar sudiu, 5, 16 (bis), S4 (bis), 56, 59, 60 (bis), 
62 ; di sudiu, 6 ; issudiu, 20 ; isintsudiu, Si ; but a.lso iarsudi, 25 ; 
di súdi, 57 ; innasudi, 21 ; i n-Ére, 19 versus i n-Érind, 79, 93. 
The s- stem dún makes its dat. sg. dún, i, 43, whereas the old 
glosses have dúin . asintaig, 13, but also assinlig, 13. 

Acc. pi.—Jichtitt, <)\firu, 15 ; scialhu, 15 ; beolu, 9, 85 ; cen na 
niuiu, 44 ; nonboru, 84 ; cindu, 89 ; eocho, aradu, 40 ; muru, 70. 

Gen. sg. — betho, 25, which occurs also Ín IB., stanza. 29, in Wb. 
29", e.g., docoiar iterum frí toia in betho, " they went again to 
desires of the world," in Ml. 16°, t.g., fir betho. As this form 
occurs Ín a Rosc it may be stiidiedly antique. 



1. co correctly takes the acc. : co tech m-Budi, 75 ; cú airm, 
67 i co déod lái, 83 ; co cathraig Conroi, 79. The dat. is wrongly 
used for the acc, e.g., co mellaib, 20 ; cusna húathaib, 67 ; cusna 
genitib glinni, 66. 

2. dar Íncorrectly has the dat, : dar bemadaib, 70 ; note varia- 
tions often in the same section, e.g., tarsin cathraig ammuich, 82 ; 
tar cathir ammuig, 8z ; tarsin eathraig ammuig, 88. 

3. eter correci]y has the acc. : eter na mná, -zi ; cf.-vj (end) ; 
eter cendail ocus Jodbu, 84; the dative in accordance with Jater 
usage is met with in 25, 29, 48. 

4. fri correctly has a 
rannairib, 14 (bis), and ii 

5. di, " de, of," is used correct]y and not confounded with do : 
9 (bis), II (but also in the same breath do Ullaib), 15 (bis), 17, 22, 
25 (bis), 28 (the § where ind rigna, " the queens," occurs, v. sub 
Noim), 41, 55, 89, 90 ; di mnaib, 18, but also do ócaib, 18. Note 
that L. reads di fhin where LU. has do fin, 9 ; do rennaib nime, 
but also de mnáib domuin, 1 9. 

6. do Í5 used for di in 3, 4, 7, 11, 59 (bis), 62, 74, 80 (bis) ; do 
na trtcoecaib ingen, 54. Older texts such as IB. preserve a careful 
distinction between di and 017, and some dialects of the living 
speech do so still. 

7. Note dia mnai, "to his wife," 68; dia echaib, "to his 

Affixed Pronouns. 
(Roman numerals prefixed refer to the division into 

II. gabsus meisce, intoxication seized them, 16. 

III. náith-ium, 32 ; iini-ai, 23; rucc-ai, 23 ; fa/g-ai, 24. 
VIII. alhecht-ai, 47. 

XI. gebih-i, 64 (bis). 

XV. leichth-e, 81 ; liicth-i, 87 ; also leicth-e, 25 (which Win- 
disch wrongly regards as pass. pres. sec sg. 3) : the phrase means 
"he lets himself into the house," not "er wurde eingelassen" as 
in Windisch's Dict. p. 656. In the foregoing instances the suffix 
is in the acc, but in lingih-i, 86 ; cingth-i-seom, 88, it seems in the 
nominative, cf. VT. Ixx. 



XII. riaí-ai, 71 ; dolléic im budin Chonaill, "he betoofc himsclf 
into ihe companyof C," io= dolUt-Í im budin C, "he betookhim- 
self Ínto thc company of C.," 1 1 ; doecmall-ai, 96 ; íegmall-ai, 96. 

I. cid dogena-sib, 6, "what wilt thou do?" 

Windisch from his rendering, viz., "was wirst du 
ihnen thun," " what wilt thou do to them?" must 
take -sib as an affixed pronoun. It has, on the other 
hand, been held that we have here an early "analytic 
use of the ^rd sg. wifh pronouns of another number 
and person" (RR. xxv.). As I have leít -sib in the 
text, I notice the form here, though I am inclined to 
regard it as a scribal corruption for dogena-siu. 

X. iúrth-und, 61 (sufíixed pronoun of i pl.). Note no haní-ai, 
75 ; atr-ai, 78 ; also sech-ai, "past him," 17. 

It is certain those affixed pronouns occur in the old 
glosses of fhe eighth century, e.g., nibronach donintarr- 
ai, "(it was) not sad fhat he returned," Wb. lói^, 18; 
dorint-ai, 3 sg. pret., occurs in Ml. Affixed pronouns 
diifer in íorm from suffixed ones and are of rarer 
Dccurrence in the glosses {cf. Sommer, CZ. i. 223). 
Mr. Strachan notes that in Saltair na Rann, "in- 
stances are very doubtful. Hence the period during 
which this formation prevailed may be reckoned from 
about the beginning of the ninth century till about the 
beginning of the fenth century, and one may wifh 
probability say that the usage was most extended in 
the ninth century " (CZ. ii. 484). In Wb. they are 

• Thutneysen (CZ, i. 349} now assigns Ihe WiirzbQrg glosses to the 
first half of the eighth century. Tiiechan's notes and Muirchu's seem to 
date from the second half of the seventh centuty or [he transition b'om the 
seventh to ihe eighth centuiy. 


Infixed Pronouns. 
The system of pronominal infixation which prevails 
in the old glosses is here well represented. 

Sg. \.—do-m-rumaU, 88 ; co-lom-bert-sa, 22 (for other instances 
of tom for I sg. v. CZ. i. 184, § 6) ; co-tom-gaba-su, 24 ; con-om'thic- 
se, 24 (bis) ; nochon-om'lfuisa duib, 26. 

Pl. i.—cut'an'mela, 52 ; for-dún'dibni, 46 (for dun v. CZ. i. 
186, g 13) ; ff/e no'don-sel-ni, " clearly he would (will) cut us," 48. 

Sg. 2. — dotdingbad-su, 94 ; atodaimet (for ad'dot'daimeí), 61 ; 
for dot V. CZ. i. 188, g 19 ; cotmidem (?) 74. 

PI. i.—co-tobsechaiin, 29 (for other insfances of tob v. CZ. i. 
1901 § 25) ; atabair-ecen, 7 ; a similar formation is found in Wb., 
e.g., iss um ectn, " mihi opus est" The proclitic copula takes the 
place of a preposition, and we may regard the pronoun as infixed 
rather than suffixed, Cf. CZ. i. 223. 

PL 3. — nos-bruend, nos'cerband, 67 (proleptic) ; nos-dibairg, 
65 ; f-os-fácaib, 13 ; ros-gab, 44 (proleptic) ; do's'fil, 53 {cf. CZ. i. 
315, where nisjil, "non sunt ii," is cited from the old glosses) ; 
nrs-feid, 47 (proleptic) ; to'sn-aimechtar, 55 ; im-ús'dich, 22 ; 
imm-us-iecrathar, 22 ; connám'usn'agat, 84 (for con-na-imm-usn'- 
agaí) ; comm'os-ratat, 84 (for con-imm-os-ra-lat). 

A'.fi.— After imm- we have the form -us- elsewhere, as in the 
Milan glosses. The first example, § 84, shows the usual nasal 
[ff. CZ. i. 210, § 71 Anm.). Dr. Stoltes's analysis of the last two 
forms is clearly wrong, v. Notes. 

Sg.fem. ■^.-—to-sn'úargaib, 85 ; do's'ber, 65 ; ad'da'ci, 17. 

N.B. — 'da' is one of the most frequent forms of the 3 sg. fem. 
infixed (v. CZ. i. 204, g 56). Windisch held this form to stand for 
ad'dan'caHp. 346 of Wórterbuch). 

Sg. 3 masc. used for neuter. — tan'ócaib, 74 (proleplic) ; conid-- 
n-accatar, 74 ; no'dn'dirgi, 27 ; ro-dngab, 69 {cf. CZ. i. 220) ; 
no'n-dlig, 14 ; da-m'beraid dá, "give it to him," 13 ; d-on-úthracar- 

Sg. 3 neut.—ro-n-uicset, 7 ; ro-n-ucset, 42, 44. 

Sg. ^fem. s' used as masc. and oflen pro!eptically. — fri's'gari, 
54 ; nos-cuir, 64 ; nos'curat, 67 ; nos'traethat, 67 ; noscengland, 
70 (proleptic) ; no's'iuarcend, 40 ; dos-fanic, 41 ; con'os'iarraid, 40 ; 
ToSgaph,'^ \ lo's'cenn,tj'& ; ro'sn'gap,g9 ; airaig, 14 {{qt adas'raig, 
"er erheht sich"); atetia (for ad-delha), 24, cf. KZ. 30, 73; 
fo'd'rácaib, 26; forda-tuigithar, 45 {da for[iiin?); no'd-glefe. 


S6 ; /o-d-ruair, 56 (frora fáirim) ; d-oifanic, 58 ; no-d-lemad, 76 
(proleptic) ; do'dfanic, 82 (proleptic) ; do-d'rigni, 8g ; notolbad 
{no-d-dolbad), 75; ro-dn-ucad, 78; nÍH-accathar, 59; coi'n'omalt 
[fo-tofo-maií), 82 ; cot-n'erig, 74 j cotngabtus {coddtfgabt'us), 30 
(proleptic) ; niliicfitis, 3. 

[A'.í.— The preposition «'«- followed by d- becomes cot-, 
whereas the conjunclion con remains unchanged, e.g., cotomer- 
chloither, glossed "agor," SG. I7\ 7 ; condumfel, "ut sim," Wb. 3°, 


ra-m'bui, 44 (proleptic) ; no-m-bera, 59; asaithgned, 25; atge- 

The many instances of proleptic usage point to a 
date later than that of the old glosses, especialiy the 
extension oí -s- fem. to the masc. Fri's-garí is thus 
used in Tirechan's Notes on the Boolc of Armagh. 
The "r, •sw oí the glosses is used for 3 sg. f. and 
for 3 pl., and is no doubt cognate with German sie, 
which Ís similariy used, and means both " she " and 
"they." The extension of it to fhe masc. sg, is early 
Middle Irish. The use of 3 sg. m. in apposition to 
a neuter noun also points to a date when the neuters 
were being coníused. From this point of view I 
should be inclined to deny a dafe much beíore 850 
A.D. for any section of the language of Fled Bricrend 
in its present form. 

ol seat, 5, 16; V. siat, "they," 29, 41 ; iai-som, 57 (3 later 
)n) ; siat (acc.) ag ; iat (nom.), 62, 66, 74, 76 ; iai (acc) 40, 
66, 67. In rotbiat, 87, we havc it as verbal form. 

Note that in § 29 the verb which is stiU deponent 
in 20 ijblmastar) has passed into the active {folmaisei). 
It is noticeable that with the exception of 5 and 16, 
the first 28 sections and §§ 79-94 dispense with eat, 


iaí, and keep to verba] forms with infixed or affixed 
pronouns ; § i6, which announces the journey to 
AiliU and Méve, may show the hand oí a redactor. 
In the HÍghlands oí Scotland there are dialects which 
never use iat but et (open e, long íf stressed, and 
dental t) invariably. In Scotland it may be said to 
be almost a dialectal test (setting pulpit speech aside). 
Pufting these two facts together, viz,, the absence oí 
iat entirely and the use where the pronoun is used of 
eat, seat, one would be led to regard §§ 1-28 and 
§§ 79~94 ^s belonging Iinguistically to an older date, 
though to different recensions, it may be. This part 
of the tale the compiler has in all likeIihood found in 
somewhat older manuscripts, 

3 Sg. Pret. Pass. in -ta, ~tha. 

IX. dobretha, "was given," 57, 72. 
XI. „ „ 63(bis). 

XIII. „ „ 7z. 

3 Sg. Pret. Act. in -ta, -tha, -th. 

VII. dobretha, "gave," 38. 
Xll. „ „ 66. 

XII. „ „ 67. 

The use of íorms in -ta in the active sense is much 
later than the age of the old Irish glosses. These 
active forms have arisen by analogy and never have 
ro before them. They are sporadic formations, and 
appear for the lirst time in early Middle Irish and 
soon disappear. 

Professor Zimmer has shown (KZ. 28, 363) the 
untenableness of Mr. Stokes's attempt to derive them 
from an old imperfect in -tát which has no existence. 



Zimmer pointed out, for the first time, I think, that in 
strong verbs such as orgim, " I slay," bongim, " I break," 
alaim, " I rear," &c., the difference of stera, based upon 
the old accent, between the old preterite and the pret. 
pass. in ló, is non-existent ; from the oldest period 
roort meant both " he slew " and " he was slain ; " roalt, 
"he brought up" and "he was brought up." Here 
Zimmer finds the beginning of the development. In 
Early Irish orta, alta, bretha, dobretha, gessa, as 3 sg. 
pret. pass. arose side by side of roort, " he was slain," 
alt, " he was reared," rogess, " he was entreated," and 
the existence of these two passive forms side by side 
brought about the rise of another active form along- 
side of the old one, eg., orta by the side of roort, and 
so also alta,feckta, sénta, /osnessa, adfeta. It was then 
but a short step to use the passives bretha, dobretha, 
dobreth, asbreth in an active sense, and to put dobretha, 
dobreth alongside of dobert. The result is that if we 
take Fled Bricrend as the work of one man and of 
uniform date, the earHest redaction of the story is 
more than a century later than the age of the glosses, 
or else, if the tale be not uniform but show the hand 
of a later compiler, §| 38, 66, 67, in which dobretha, 
"he gave," has an active sense, must be assigned a 
date later than some other portions of the text. Even 
if we suppose two old redactions, §§ 66, 67 (the judg- 
ment of Samera) may have been committed to writing 
somewhat later than the rest, In § 38 also we might 
trace the hand of one of the compilers, and it is 
noticeable that in Egerton, g§ 33-41 follow after § 74. 


-T- Added to I AND 3 Pl. Pres. Ind. 

IX, chat[h]aiginit-ni, 57. 
II. gabtait'a sriathu foraib, ij. 

Zimmer sees here a pronominal affix, and thinks 
that, after the pronoun lost its meaning, mit was felí 
as a simple ending. Thurneysen (CZ. ii. 79) doubts 
this, as otherwise we have pronominal affixa of the 
3 per. only after verbs in -i and -us, never in -/, and 
thinks it is due to confusion between non-relative 
endings in -it and relative endings in -te : berit berte, 
ib. 80. 

In any case, § 57 belongs to a later date. It 
shows Norse influence in the loan-word spárr, Norse 
sparri, but it might come from an Old English 
sparra. This section is absent from Eg. The gloss 
in § 15 shows the scribe's hand ; atafregat indicates 
Bimpie misreading of_/"for s of the Irish script: gabtait 
and rofergaigestar are either due to a compiler or we 
have to infer that the tale was first written late in the 
ninth century. 

3 Sg. Pret. Pass. in -^5. 

XII. robas, 70. 

This is Middle Irish for roboth, which is the passive 
form used Ín II., III., VIII. Mr, Strachan notes robas 
as appearing once in SR. 7564. As § 70 is part of 

• Cf. ZÍmmer's twa statements :— 

(l) "alafregal forlar tige 7 gabtait ssciathu foraib, 'sie erheben sich auf 
dem flut des hauses und nehmen sie ihre schilde auf sich,' wo das an 
die ein&che- verbalform suffigierlc element mit dem der cQmpooierlen 
infigierten anf gleicher slufe sleht (irf-ta^rf,f[i/." — KZ. 28, 3:9. 

(z) "atafrrgal fUr atasregal; das I in atasraíg, atasregai ist aus den 
formen atsraig, alraig eingeschleppt wie z.b. atrolhreb fiir aárolhrtb aus 
atrtba {=adtreba)."— KS, I, 39. 


a whole episode, viz., The Combat against Ercol 
(§§ ^9-7')i 't leads one to think that these sections 
may not have formed part oí the original íorm of 
the story. One has to consider what loan-words, if 
any, are íound therein — v. sub Loan- Words. 

Reduplicated Future. 

s. ful. sec. — cichsed (r.), 22, 23, from cingim ; iurthund, 
•'iurad, sec redup. s. fut. of tfí-^íwi-t-affixed pronoun i per sg j 
lO'don'sel-ni (r.), 48, from slaidim. 

Three of these forms occur in the Rosc, which is 
studiedly archaic ; the other has the suffixed pronoun, 
So far as the above forms are concerned they would 
suit the age of the Milan glosses, circa 750 a.d. 

3 Sg. Pres, Ind. in -nd. 

VII, concingenn, 34. 
VII, nostuarcend, 4a 

{noscerband, 6?. 
nosbruend, 67. 
noscengland, 70. 

On this falsely so-called consuetudinal present 
(conj. sg. 3 in -««) see Thurneysen in IF. i. 330, 
CZ, i. 343. It will be noted that the last three forras 
occur within the group §§ 69-71, which are later addi- 
tions, the first two within the group §§ 33-41, which 
in Eg. follow aíter § 74. These íorms seem due to 
some compiler. 

3 Sg. -ad in Act. and Pass. Sense. 

X. conaccrad, 59 (pass.). 
VIII. conaccrad, 56(3«.). 

Windisch analyses both as pass. pret. s^ 


con-acraim, and adds that co n-accrad írora co n- and 
ad-gaur, " I entreat, invite," is aiso possible. But to 
make proper sense we have to interpret § 56 in the 
active sense, This would seem to indicate that the 
language belongs to a transition stage. Note too that 
co, con, "with," wrongly takes acc, e.g., co n-Ultu immi, 
56, cf. collin n-ingen, 53. Perhaps we have to do with 
a corruption of an active sec, present, or else we 
should substitute a deponent form. 

3 Sg. Pret. in 'Is in Compodnd Verbs. 


tairblingis, 39, 40 ; 
without the ra);fácba. 

iarfaigis, 39 (where Eg. has t- pret, though 

,,bT, fuacrais,f^. 

These forms may be due to the corapiler, or rather 
to some redactor, as they occur in sections which 
may otherwise be suspected of belonging to a late 
recension, fácbaiside ( = fácbais-side), 67, versus _^j- 
fácaib, 13 ; fodrácaib, 26 ; foracaib, 79. It leads us to 
iníer that § 67 is of later date. 

Absolute 3 Sg. s- Pret. 

MÍd. Irish is the frequency of absolute forms oí the 
3rd sg. s- pret., e.g. :— 

anais, 42 (but ro ansat, 72) ; iachtcds, 39 (v. corroiacht of Eg^, 
40 i garthis, 40 '^Eg.') ; tndlis, 43 ; ferais, 66, 68, 69, 79 ; 3 pl. 
fersat, 54. 

Note.—a/chiu, 44, 45, 47, 49, for Old Irish adciu {cf. KZ. z8, 
324) ; ottcoiidcadur, 99, a later fonti after analogy of alchonnarc, 
"I saw," for earlier cúnaccatar as in FB., i)l = confacadur, 100. 
Noticeable also is the 3 sg. s- pret. with ro, e.g., ro imráid, 8 ; ro 
innis, 70. 


2 Pl. in ■ 


III. fondrancmbt 
XII. ludchaibm^r^fA. 
XIII. rancaibair, 73. 
XV. immatudchabair, 89. 
XV. rancaibair, 90. 

Professor Strachan (CZ. ii. 493) notes that these 
íorms come from preterites which, in the other persons 
of the plural, have the deponent endings. He classifies 
them as i pl. and adds ; "Why the íinal syllable 
should be -air I cannot explain ; except in simple 
verbs, the endings of the i and 3 pl. are in LU. 
regularly -mar (-már), -iar (tdr)." Professor Strachan 
has here committed a singular oversíght. The forms 
are in -dair and are 2 pl. The 2 pl. forms in -óar 
are later Irish for older -íV. There are seven such 
forms in Sallair na Rann, in treating which Professor 
Strachan himselí regards the -bar ending as a new 
formation fo -mar, tar. Thus — 

j- become -! -i 


hblaing, 82 ; atgéoin, 70 ; aígénammdr, 46, 48 ; aígenafar, zj ; 
feotar, 63 Yfeoit, 57, ? sec. pres.]. 

Other forms such as chzrnla have survived till later 

I Pl. tísam. 
^Sg. the, 62 ; Ihi, 52, 
3 Sg. sia, 89. 

And c/. 3 sg. fut. stc.-~ro sassad, 91 ; for-dun-dibni, "occidet 
nos," 46. 


Absolute Forms in the Present and Future 


(a) ^per. sg.—fonaisrid, 76, 77 ; iairnid, 78 ; cáemclóid, 81, 87. 

(b)— /emdií, 41 ; talnie, \^;fácbait, 56, 57; timnait, 
65 ; fáetnitf 78 ; fmaisccit-sium, 77. 

(c) 1 ptr. pl.-—nach antai, 75 (sec. pres. ?). 


IX. nothaimed, 57. 

X. nothaihiged, 63, 

XVI. nothescbad, 91. 

3 Sg. Relative Form of "biu." 

íítt, 9, 13, 55, 89, g2. 


(i) dorénad, i, 2, 3, versus dorigned, 75. The 
former is in accord with the language of the glosses 
which have also the variant durénath, the latter is 
an analogical íonnation after the active dorigni ; 
doronsat, 21, 42 (3 pl. pret.) may have arisen from 
dorónad, but at a date anterior to that of this text.* 

(2) dorat (never doberí) as pret. of dobiur is found 
throughout as Ín the glosses. But this fonn is stereo- 
typed and in use in Saltair na Rann and the " Book 
of Deer," and dobert itself is íound Ín the later stratum 
of the Milan glosses {i'^, 7); cf. Tur. 135. Hence 
cotombert-sa, 22, is no sign of special lateness. A 
composer of a studiediy archaic Rosc could use this 
form in the last quarter of the ninth century. 

derna, 8, can't be 3 sg. pi 
itmus, Ml, 39>, II, a. rorm due 

1 Windiscli, bul 2 sg. ; 



(3) atrubart, 20, 81 ; asrubart, 80 ; but asbert is 
also Jn 80, and it occurs at least twice in the Mitan 
glosses, which otherwise have asrubart ; asbert is the 
form in 22, 23, 24. In SR, (987 a.d.) atbert, asbert 
occur, yet once, at any rate, aírubairt, 1. 1325. Were 
it a familiar forn:i the exigencies of metre would lead 
one to expect its more frequent occiirrence in SR. 

(4) arlasiar, 21, for older arlasair (with ending OÍ 
depon. pref.), the old aorist in s of deponent verb 
ad-gladur (KZ. 28, 152); it was influenced by the 
weak S' pret. in -asiar ; adgladastar, 3 sg, pret., 5, 18, 
begins a sentence without ro, which it would have in 
0!d Irish before 800 a.d, 

(5) The survival of the old genitive betho, 24, leads 
me to regard this Rosc as composed not later than 
100 years after the glosses ; circa 900 A.D. would 
amply satisfy all requirements. One should here note 
the form of the infixed pronoun 2 pers, pl. in the 
Rosc in § 29 (cotobsechaitti) and compare co'tob'sechfidir 
di choscc alaiLiu, "ye will be corrected by another 
correction " (pass. fut. sg, 3). — Wb, 9^ 

(6) nóithium. — I take this in the sense of " est mihi, 
habeo," 22, and regard it as an analogical formation 
after béiíhium = roinboi ; cf. bóithus failte, "they had 
welcome " ; baithium anfud, " there was to me a 
Btorm," If I am right in my interpretation, the date 
of the Rosc (§ 22) is the ninth century, for we have 
here an afBxed pron. oí the first person. On the 
otherhand, SR, has a pa.ri. néiíhi írom a root signifying 
" celebrate, ennoble, multiply," with which cf noithech 
i. oirdheirc, 0'Clery's Glossary ; and again, noudh . . ut 
est noudh ainmhi i, leasainm ["nickname"]. — O'Dav. 


Deponent Forms 1N -AG-. 
rofírgaigestar, 15. 
This íorm occurs in Miian glosses as deponent 
[nifercaigedar, M!. 24^, i8). Stoites regards a similar 
íorm in VT. (Introd. Ixxxix.) as MÍddle Irísh, being 
" the use in the case of active verbs of deponential 
forms in the sg, 3 and pl. 3." 

mrabreihaigestar, 90. 
Pret. sg. I. — roderscaigesíar, i. 

Mr. Strachan notes the frequency of verbs in 
-aigiin, and of deponent forms in the ^rd persons 
oí í- pret. in LL. text of the Táin, particularly in the 
Ferdiad episode, whiie such are rare in the L t^version 
of íhe same. 

Note the ACTIVE FORMS : rocrithnaigset, 15 ; mrodilsig, 40 ; 
nlrrathaigsem, 43 ; numi brelhaigeseo, 58 ; brethaigfetsa, 58 ; 
chathaigmiini, 58 ; /ortamlaigid, 69. 

e form 3 ^]./olmaiset, 29. 

Deponent Verbs. 

Pret. sg. %—atgládaslar, 5, 18. 
Conjuncl sg. i. — mani /elur-sa, 6. 
Pret. sg. ^.—/áitbestár, 9. 
Pa/. sg. I. — denúthraear, 9. 

Pret. sg. ^.—/olmastar, 20, yet 

Pret. sg. 3. — conarlastar, 21. 

Pres. sg. ^—Ímmustecrathar, 22 (r.). 

'i—coibhthar, 23 (r.). 

Pres. ind. sg. 3. — laimethar, 23 (r.). 

Pret. — ochsatar, 24 (r.). 
D S. fut. sg. y—canmestar, 30 (r.), but active form i pL cotmidem, 

V 74 ; /aigbistar, 30 (a barbaric s- fut. from/o^aía/'jw— Stokes). 

K Fut. sg. I. — conda-esur, 31 (used Ín subj. sense). 

K Subj. sg. ^.—/olimathar, 33, ^5 ; Eg. has rotlemalhar, depon. 

H íuL of rolaimiur. 

■ gebithar, 33 (r.). 

H immacomsinitar, 38 (impersoQal use of depon.), 67. 


Pres. ind. sg. ^—/ordaíuigiíhar, 45. 

Pres. ind. sg. 3. — curethar, 48 (r.), 52 ; but active nichuir, 35 
ír.) ; cf. noscuir, 64. 

taltastár, 55 ; rothallasíar, 79. 3 {?).—rodmatar, 56. 

.Sttí;. J^. ^.—nínaccathar, 59. 

/•w. jy. 3.—diígethar (t.), 71- 

/"í-íJ. Jf. 3 ín middle sense.—nosinithar, 78. 3. — dorumenalár, 8z. 

/■ír^ í^. y~forcóemnacair, 83. 

/■íí^ ■ÍS'- 'i.—ni fordamair, 85. 

/'rw, »«(£ Jjf. ^.—foraiíhmenalhar {Ms. -atar), 86. 
„ forathmenadar, 87. 

„ dammideíhar, 88. 

Pí;^ íf- 3- — rolámair, 90. 
„ ardamair, 90. i.—jínnamdr, 94. 

Conjuncl sg. i. — ío tallur-sa, 94. 

/'m. ínrf. íf. ■2.—ataigtker, 100, 98 {adaghaictir, L.)'^attadar, 
Ed.j aílítídirsi, atáigirsi, 100. 

jVo/a. — atcluni-siu, 35 (pres. sg. 2) shows deponent 
forms in Wb. The active form used in íifeí^ Bricrend 
points to decay, and hence to a date later than the 
glosses. Mr. Strachan in his excellent treatment of 
the Deponent Verbs says : "Judging simpiy by pro- 
babilities, 1 should hesitate to place any tale in which 
the deponent inflexion is well preserved later, at the 
latest, than about the middle of the ninth century, 
but that as yet is onty a subjective opinion." This, 
along with other considerations, would lead us to 
regard Fled Bricrend as, in its present forra, a laíe 
deponential text, not eariier HnguisticaIIy than circa 
S75 A.D. 

V. CZ. I. 91. 


6r, " gold," 2, fr. aurutn. 

carrmoeail, " carbuncle," 2, fr. carbunculus. 
gem, "gem," 2, 51, h. gemma. 

ordogud, 2, founded on ord, fr. ordo. 

senislre, 3, "windows," ír./eneslra. 

colcihib, 4, fr. culcita. 

cerchaiUib, 4, fr. cervical. 

cailc, Tj, fr. calx. 

laoch, 22, fr. laicus, "layinan, no 

sústaib, 48, ÍT./uslis, " a club." 

morUhend, 52, 71, fr. morticiniui 

airicul, 54, fr. oraculum (?). 
praind, 56, {i. pnzndium. 

dracon, 62, fr. L. drdco, fr, the Greek. 
/ormtha, 62, pl. nom. of/romad, fonned fr. probatio. 

grán, 63, fr. L. granum. 

airthend, 63, fr. araiio. 

cubat, 64, fr. cubitus. 

ceist, 93, fr. guestio, 

celebrad, 65, fr. celebrare. 

lini, dat. o{ line, 65, fr. /('«ea. 

muinter, "femilia," 67, fr. monasterium. 

íort-aide, 68, fr. /ur/ií, "a cake." 

eihíar, 81, fr. ather, 

mod, 84, fr. modus. 

nóna, 91, fr. ni^. 

■:ífS;5, 91, "bloclc," fr. cippus. 

caindleóracht, 92, fr. candela. 

costud, 22, fr. consuetudo; cf 
demeanour"; but Stokes (Bez. I 
constare). It is to be distinguished from costad, v. Irische Texte, 
iii. 222 ; cf rfo chostud mo lenna, "to taste my ale" : O.E., costian; 
O.H.G., costSn; N. hostfí, from which it is usually taken, but it 
may equally well be founded on the O.E, 

buirg, nom. pl., 53. "£org is not directly borrowed from any 
of the Teutonic languages in which the word (O.N. borg, O.E., 
burh) is feminine. The Irish iorg, gen. and nom. pl. buirg, is 
always masc. It is the Low Latia burgus!' — K. Meyer in R.C. 

's rigda incosíud, "kingly the 
i, p. 74) says it is founded o 


lo, 368. Zimmer deríves it from O.N. birrg=0.'E. burg, Auri, and Á 
notes that Ít occurs in thc " St. Gall Priscian," ♦ e.g., borc, borggdeu, 
57», 6, 7- It is a synonym of ihe Gael. Uss. I am not convinced 
that very grcat wcight, howcver, should herc be laid upon gender. 
cuairt, 55, 86, 87, also in Mid- chúarta. Mr. Slofces gives the 
stem as kukrti-, ít. kur, " circle," as in cruinti, " round " ; but, like 
Eng. " court," il Ís a ioan-word from Low Latin cartí, corlis, " court, 
palacc." Cf. Hn. p. 58, 2. 

Old English. 

rál, 34, 47, fr. rád, whence "road." The Irish word is séí, and 
Cormac ctymologises it roshét, i.e., a big sitJ 

sparr, dat pL sparrib, 57, fr. O.E. sparra, from which the 
derivative verb sparrian, to fasten a door with a spar ; O.N. sparri 
{■verbum sparra), whence it is derived by Zimmer {Z.f.D.A. 3í, p. 
z88). Section 57, however, does noi occur in Eg., and as there 
are rcasons for thinking Ít late, it must be :iaid that nothing hinders 
a Norse origín. 

rethir, 86, " ríddle," fr. Ar^'&r, "sieve"; v. CZ. i. 96 ; Z.f.D.A. 

/uinnema, 86, " winnowing," fr. vindvjan, " to winnow " ; Mid. 
Eng. wimiwen, CZ. i. 97. 

N.B. bethir, 8, Ís the word stiU in use for the " lightning-bolt " 
in the Highlands, and has nothing to do with the same fbrm of 
word meaning "bear," from O.E. fcr, "bear." 


fuine, 9, "cook." This word in the Celtic languages is quite 
isolated ; a tenable native derivation is sought in vain. Zimmer 
bclievcs the Ir. icfune, " a-roasting," to come from a Norse ex- 
pression halda vii funa, "hold to the fire," "on the fire"; halt 
Fáfnis hjarta viAfuna, "hold Fafni's heart to the fire,"— Z.f.D.A 
for 1891 (voi. 35, p. 159"). Mr. Macbain (Ety. Dict.) thinlcs it 
unlikely, so does Mr. Strachan, but both without grounds. The 
suggested vani-, " dress," root ven, von, Lat. Venus, Eng. venerate, 
Ís impossible. The Gaeiic word from this root ís_/Ííií, "a tribe," 

* A work written in Ireland between 850-860, and brought to the 
Continent befbre 869 (Nigia, Retiquit Cettiche, 8-15). 


Norse, vifir, "a friend." Were the two words cognate, one would 
e^cpect the Norse side to have v- initial. Gaelic uses the word in 
the senae of roasting, e.g.,fuim an tuirc, "the roasting of the 
boar."— 0'Grady's Sil. Gad. i. 86, 2. In the Highlands it means 
"to bake," a secondar/ meaning from "to fire." It occurs Ín 
Broccan's Hxmn, 1. 148 : for ten ic fune ind loig, "on the fire 
coolcing the calí" The phrase bargen , , iama fuine iria mil, 
"loaves baked in honey," contains nothing 10 exclude the idea of 
"fired." By the time of 850-875 the word could easily be kiiown 
in Ireland ; such a word miist often have been heard from Vitings' 
lips, andby thecndof Ihe ninthandbeginningof the tenlhcentury, 
when a renascence, so to speak, of Gaelic literature took place, 
it would be used without any scruple. Mr. Strachan, however, 
thinks a Norse derivation Ís "altogether improbable." Why? 

Native terms are found in : dállurna Danair ag luchlaisechi, 
"the Danes were cooking" — MacFirbis's"Three Fragtnents," sub 
anno 851 ; imon ieni oc urgnatn na muci, " about the fire cooking 
the pig" — 0'Curry's " Man. and Cus.," iii. i5i ; cffulocht, "cook- 
ing-pit." Further : oc fuine eisc for indeoin . . . in cet lucht ro 
berbad don indeoin = " Ú\c cooking (firing) a fish on a spit . . . the 
iirst lucht (potful) that was sodden on the spit" — Cormac sub Otc 
Treith ; nowadays, bniith, "boil" ; Mod. Gael. <£ cocaireachd, cí 
rosiadh, "a-cookÍng, a-roasting," are not native. The usual native 
method seems to have been boiling ; the Norse/íínu was associated 
withholding infront of the fire, atid ít is only in the sense of " firing 
the bread" that the word is used in the Highlands, but now il Ís 
inclusive of the preparatory processes of making dough (u' taos- 
nadh) and of kneading ; funi bargeni, "knead a cake" — Cog. 
Gaidh, p. ijó. The term came in with the enslaved Norse. In 
Orgain Brudne Da Dergae cooks are QsiX^áfulachiorej cooking — 
oc dénamfulochia. 

nél, "cloud," is used in 39 as synonymous with ceó, "fog," 
which occurs seven words previously. There is much probability 
that this indicates foreign influence, — "nebel." The use of the 
verbs tarblingis, iarfaigis, íachíais without ro is Mid. Ir. The 
Eg. version has ceo in both cases, and iarfacht, corroiacht, for the 
last two verbs respectivcly, which is bettet. 


/í«í,22{r.), 53(r.). 

fian, 30 (r.), 90 [in which section we have (i) depon. i 
(a) na as nom. pl, m. of arl., (3) the cormption demetar]. 

dibairg, 65 [this occurs in chap. xi., which is due Co some 

giUa, 31, 36, 37, 3S, 89. Zimmer lakes it from Norse gildR, 
" stout, brawny, of fuU worth," O.E. gilda, " fellow," used in the 
names of Norsemen converted to ChrÍ5tÍanÍty instead of maol, 
" alave." In ihe Celtic languages it stands isolated. 

As to 3. direct reference to Norsemen in Fíed 
Bricrend, that depends, according to Mr. Strachan, 
on Zimmer's Ínterpretation of Jiantt and dibergach 
from an imaginary Norse Tyverk (Gótt. gel. Anz. 1891, 
p. 195). " But in GlosscB Htbernic<2, 284, Zimmer 
corrects iddemergach very probably to aithdibergach, 
í/". introd. xlv. In the Arrada, Rawl. 512, B. 42% 2, 
diherg is mentíoned along with many other sins : 
sicMí rongabsat fingala 7 duineorcni 7 duinetáidi 7 sicut 
rogabsat diberga 7 druidechta, " such are fratricides and 
homicides and secret murders, with concealment of 
the body, and such as are díberga and sorceries, It 
is a priori improbabte that the Vikings should figure 
in tales of so early a date, and much more conclusive 
evidence wilt be required before their presence can be 
accepted as an esíablished fact." — ^Strachan, in Trans. 
Phil. Soc. It Ís to be noted that the Irish diberga put 
certain diabolical marlcs on their heads; v. Muirchu's 
"Notes on the Boolc of Armagh" in VT. ^^ó"", where 
diberca is written as a gloss over signa sumens. Mr. 
Stokes (íí.) compares Colgan's Trias Thaumaturgata, 
p. 27), where it is said of Maguil, " Sumpsitque cum 
sociis suis signa diabolica super capita, id est Diberch"; 
c/. also " stygraata diabolica in capitibus " (Tr. Th. 556, 
col. i). As the word is a gloss, one might think that 
a ninth-century reader used a current word, and 
identiíied in his mind the Norse pagan practices of 
those devoted to the Norse god Tyv with that of old 


Irish paganism. Stokes gives diberg^ (i) brigandage, 
(2) a kind of brigand, f r. rf/ ( = Lat. de) intensive prefix, 
and berg (acc. pl. bergd) — Félire, Prob. 42 ; compd. 
Soer-bergg (AU. 790). Cognate with Spanish bergante^ 
Fr. brigandf and other Romanic words — Bezz. Beit. 



LU Incipit Fled Bricre«d ocus in Curathmír Emna 
^ ■ Macha ocus in Briatharchath Ban-Ulad ocus 

Tochiwí \}\ad do Chruachnaib Ai ocus Cennach 

i»d Ruanada i Macha. 


1. Bói fled mór la Bricriwd Ne»íthe«ga do Chow- 
chobwr mac Nessa oms do \J\taib huile. 'BMadain lan 
dó oc tiwól na flede. Dorónad iarom tegdas chuw- 
tachta lais íri f«'thaileíw tomalta na flede. (foHrotacht 
iarowí a tech si« la ^ricHnd i w-Dú« Rudraige fó chos- 5 
mailius na Críébrúadi i w-Emai« Macha, achí nawjmá 
roderscaigestar a tech so eter adbur ocus elathaiw, Gier 
cháimi ocus chumtachtae, eXer úatni ocus airinigi, eier 
lígrad ocus lógmaire, eier sochríiide ocus súachnide, 
et^r irscartad ocus íwdorus do thigib í«na íawsiri 10 
sin uli. 

2. Is amlaid trá dorónad a tech sin : Sudigud Tige 
Midchúarta fair. Nói n-iwdada a«d o thenid co 
fraigid, tricha traiged i n-airdi cacha íairinig crédumíe 

co n-diórad óir friú uile. Ctwrotacht rfgiwdíe a«d 15 
íaroffí do Chonckohur i n-airinuch i«d rígthige sm úas 
imdadaib i« tige uile co «-geíMaib carrmocail ocus 
lógmaraib ar chena, ocus ligrad óir ocus airgit ocus 
cbarrmocail ocus datha cach th/re, co m-ho chomsolus 


Here beginneth the Feast of Bricriu, and the 
Champion's Portion of Emain, and the Ulster 
Women's War - of - Words, and the Hosting 
of the Men of Ulster to Cruachan, and the 
Champion's Wager in Emain. 


L § I. Bricriu of the Evil Tongue held a great feast 

^M for Conchobar mac Nessa and for all the Ultooians. 

^H The preparation oí the íeast took a whole year. For 

^^ the entertainment of the guests a spacious house was 

^B built by him. He erected it in Dun Rudraige after 

^H the lifceness [oí the palace] oí the Red Branch in 

^H Emain. Yet it surpassed the buildings of that period 

^^ entirely for material and for artistic design, for beauty 

^l of architecture — its piUars and frontings splendid 

^M and costly, its carving and lintel-worfc famed for 

^H magnihcence, 

^H § 2. The House was made on this wise : on the 

^H plan of Tara's Mead-Hall, having nine compartments 

^H from fire to wall, each fronting of bronze thirty feet 

^H high, overlaid with gold. In the fore part of the palace 

^H a royal couch was erected for Conchobar high above 

^H those of the whole house. It was set with carbuncles 

^H and other precious stones which shone with a lustre 

^H of gold and of silver, radiant with every hue, making 

Feast is 





lá ocus adaig ,ii^ii'-.'Ocus conrotachtá dawís dá iwdai 
déc i« dá, erred "déc UW impe. Ba chójwnart iarínn 
i« ghííAa si« ocus iwd 2.ddur dobreth dó dénom 
i« lig.'- Sesrech oc tabairt cecha clethi ocus móríessiur 
;*dí thrénferaib Ula^ oc cor cacha hóenslaite, ocus 5 
íí-icha sEÉr do príms<feraib hErewíf oc á dénaw ocus oc 
a ordogud. 

3. Dorónad dawf gríaná« ia Bricri«d fodessi« fó 
chowardus iwdai Conchobair ocus iwna láth n-gaile. 
Conrotacht iarom \n gHanan si« do i»íde»maib ocus 10 
cu»!taigib saÍMamraib ocus rosudigthe senistre glai«ide 
ass ior cach leth. íTowrotacht iarum senestír dlb uasa 
i»ídaid-seom íadéiw, co í«-bo fodirc dó-som imcissíu in 
tige máir úad assa imdai, déig ro fitir-som, nl léicfitis 
\}\aid isatech. 15 

4. In tan tra bá urlam la Bricrind dénam a thige 
máir, ocus a gríanán, ocus a n-errad dfb línaib do 
brothrachaib ocus brecánaib ocus cholcthib ocus 
cerchaiUib, ocus a tincor do lind ocus do biud, ocus 
nad rabi nf bad esbaid liad eter deintrub ocus comad- 20 
bar na flede, dothíét iar sin co toracht Emtiiw Macha 

ar cend ConchobaíV co mathib fer n-UIad irabi. 

5. Ba hed la and sin iarom robói óenach la hUltu 
Í n-Em(ii'« Macha. Ferthar failti fris iar sudiu ocus 
dofesserf for gúaluind Conchobíii'r. Atgladastar Conco- 25 
har co n-Ultaib ol chena. "Táit lim-sa," ol sé, "co 
tormailí'í/h fleid lim," "Maith lim-sa da«(í," ol Conco- 
\>ar, " mad maith la IJliu." Frisgart Fer^s mnc Róig 
ocus raathi VÍaei ar chena, co n-ep^rtatár : " Ní 
ragam," ol seat, "ar bit lia ar mairb oldáte ar m-bí 30 
far n-ar n-imchosait do BricríW, dfa tisam do thomailt 

a ilede." 

" grianain, fí. ^ dofeisidh, //. 

" co toimailíí/h fleid hum, /í,- cotormail [ ] lí, Ll/. 



night like unto day. Around it were placed the 
twelve couches of the twelve heroes o£ Ulster. The 
nature of the workmanship was on a par with the 
material of the edifice. It took a waggon team to 
carry each beam, and the strength of seven Ulster 
men to fix each pole, while thirty of the chief arti- 
ficers of Erin were empIoyed on its erection and 

§ 3- Then a baIcony * was made by Bricriu on a 
level with the couch of Conchobar [and as high as 
those] of the heroes of valour. The decorations oí 
its fittings were magnificent. Wíndows of glass were 
placed on each side of it, and one of these was above 
Bricriu's couch, so that he could view the hall from 
his seat, as he knew the Ulster men would not sufFer 
him within. 

§ 4. When Bricriu had finished building the hali 
and baIcony, supplying it both with quiHs and blankets, 
beds and pillows, providing raeat and drink, so that 
nothing was Íacking, neither furnishings nor food, 
he straightway went to Emain to meet Conchobar 
and the nobles of Ulster. 

§ 5. It fell upon a day there was in Emain a 
gathering of the Ulster men. He was anon made 
welcome, and was seafed by the shoulder oí Con- 
chobar. Bricriu addressed himself to him as well as 
to the body of the Ulster men. "Come with me," 
quoth Bricriu, "to partake oí a banquet with me." 
" GIadly," rejoined Conchobar, " if that please the 
men of Ulster." Fergus mac Roig and the nobles of 
Ulster also made answer : " No ; for if we go our dead 
will outnumber our living, when Bricriu has incensed 
us against each other." 

* lit, soller. 


goes to 


6. " Bid messu diiib ém," ol se, " a n-dogen-sa, 
céin co tisaid lim." " Cid dogena-sib di sudiu," ol 
O^nchobar, " cén co t/asat Ulaid lat f " " Dogén-sa 
ém " ol Brícri'iií " imcossáit na ríg ocus na tóisech ocus 
na láth n-gaiíe ocus na n-ócthigernd, commáromarba 5 
cách dib a chéli, nwwi thísat lim do ól mo flede," 
"Nocho dingniam-ni airut-su sin" or Conchobíír. 

" Immacossaitiub-sa eter in mac ocus a athdiV, com- 
mámuirfe dóib. Mani fet»r-sa sin daíif," or se, "im- 
mácossaítiub eter i« n-i«gi« ocus ammáthair, Mani 10 
fetar sin dawo," or se, " immacossaitiub dá cích cacha 
oénmná la Ultw, commatuaircfe doib, co m-brenfat 
ocus collofat la sodain." " Is ferr a techt," ol Fergus 
mac Róig, " bid fír sucut" ol se. "Denaid inuna- 
callaim dieíiu," or Sencha míic h'úella, "liathad do 15 
degdáinib Ulad, mád maith lib." " Bíaid olc de," ol 
Conchobar, " cen co déntar comarli fris." 

7. Tíagait iaríw; mati JJlad uli i n-imacallaim. 
Ba si comarll Sencha doib dano ina n-imacallaim : 
"Maith tra," ol Sencha, "uair atabairece» techt la 20 
Biicrind, togaid aití'n de ocus sudigid ochtwr claid- 
bech imbi im dul dó asintig, acht co taisfena a fled 
dóib." Dochóid Furbaide Ferbend m«c Conchobwir 
lasin n-athesc sin conécid do Bncrind in n-imacallaim 
uli. " Maith lim " ol Bricnw " a denam samlaid," 25 
Tocfmlat ass iarínn Ulatd o E,raain Macka, cach drong 
immá rig, cach réim immá rurig, cach buden immá 
túsech. Bá halaind iarijm ocus bá hamra in tochim 
ronuicset in trénfir ocus ind láith gaile dochwm ind 
rígthaige. 30 

' dogcnasu, Jf. * c&Í tisait, /f. 

' Cúmma.roiiiarbae doibh maine, J/, ^ digniuroni, LU. 

' commamuirfea doibh, //. '" mátair, L(/. 

" comatuaircfea doibh, /f. " cologhfat, //. 

*° atibccin, L; atibeic-, //. 

g 6. " If ye come not, worse shall ye íare," quoth Brioriu'a 
Bricriu. "What then," asked Conchobar, "if the *l»»a*8- 
Ulster men go not with thee ? " "I will stir up strife," 
quoth Bricriu, " between the kings, the leaders, the 
heroes of valour, and the yeomen, till they slay one 
another, man for raan, if they do not come with me 
to share my feast." "That we shall not do to please 
thee," quoth Conchobar. " 1 will stir up enmity 
between father and son so that it will come to mutual 
slaughter. ff 1 do not succeed in doing so, 1 will 
make a quarrel between raother and daughter, If 
that does not succeed, I wiU set each of the Ulster 
women at variance, so that they come to dead]y 
blows till their breasts become loathsome and putrid." 
"Sure 'tis better to come," quoth Fergus. "Do ye 
straightway take counsei with the chief Ultonians," 
said Sencha, son of Ailill, " Unless we take counsel 
against this Bricriu, mischief will be the conse- 
quence," quoth Conchobar, 

§ 7, Thereupon ali the Ulster nobles assembled in Ooiuná 
counciL In discussing the matter Sencha counselled offlBter 
them thus : "Take hostages from Bricriu, since ye 
have to go with him, and set eight swordsmen about 
him so as to compel him to retire from the house as 
soon as he has Jaid out the feast," Furbaide Ferbenn, 
son of Conchobar, brought Bricriu reply, and showed 
him the whole matter. " It is happily arranged," 
quoth Bricriu, The men of Ulster straightway set 
out írom Emain, host, battalion and company, under 
king, chieftain and leader. Excellent and admir- 
able the march of the brave and valiant heroes to 
the palace. 



8. Roimráid Íarom Bricrra inna mfwmain, dús 
cinnas doragad ar imchossáit UW, ó dodeochatar 
aittí'n na tréníer tar a chend. O roglé á\diu a imrádud 
ocus a scriitan uli inna me«raain, dolluid co m-bói im 
budin Lóegaire 'Qus.áaig mí'c Connaid míc llíach. 5 
" Maith sin trá, a hoegairi Buadsí^," or se, " a balc 
bullig Breg, a brúth bulHg Midi, a bethir breóderg, 

a búaid n-oc n-Uloí/! Cid dait-siu ná bad lat in 
curathmír Emna do gr^ ? Mad ferr lim-sa ém," or 
se, " bid Hm." " Ríge líéch n-Erewíf uaim-se dait," ol 10 
Br'icriu, "acht co n-derna mo chomarli-sea." " Dogén 
immorro " or Líégaire. 

9. " Mad lett ém canratAmír mo thige-se, bid lat 
c^urat/imir Etnna do grés. Is cóir curathj«/r mo 
thige do cosnom," or se, " ni c^xxrathmlr tige meraige. 15 
Atá dabach hi talla triar and dí lathuíi gaile fer 
n-UW, iarna linad do ftn acneta. Ata torc secht 
m-bliii(iíi« and ; (o ro bo) orc becc, ní dechaid inna béolu 
acht littiu lemnachta ocus menadach i n-erroch, ocus 
ífrcroith ocus fírlemnacht issawrud, eitne cnó ocus 20 

loo'' fírchruithnecht hi fogomur, ocus feóil ocus enbruthe 
hi gemrud. Ata bó thiiir and dfa n-at slána a secbt 
m-h\\adna ; ro bo lóeg bec, ní dechaid fráech no 
foigdech inna béolu acht fírlemnacht ocus luigfér glas- 
feoir ocus arbar. Atát cóic fichit bargen cruithnechta 25 
and iarna fuine trfa mil. Cóic méich fichet tra, iss ed 

' immardoraidh, /^. ° búatd, Zf. 

•' acneta : i., LU; di fhin aicinta a ttribh Franc-, L; 
d'fin fucenta adtlrib Francc-, H. 

" The facsimile has a gap of some three letters ; then "le," 
— cf. 100'', L 3 ; órobo leo orc mbec, L; or bó beo orc bec, H. 



§ 8. The hostages of the braves had gone security 
on his behalf, and Bricriu accordingly bethought 
him how he should manage to set the Ulster 
men at variance. His deliberation and self-scrutiny 
being ended, he betook himself to the company of 
Loigaire the Triumphant, son of Connad raac Ilíach, 
" Hail now, Loigaire the Triumphant, thou mighty 
mallet of Bregia, thou hot hammer of Meath, flame- 
red thunderbolt, thou victorious warrior of Ulster, 
what hinders the championship oí Emain being thine 
alway?" " If I so choose, it shall be mine," 'quoth 
Loigaire. *' Be thine the sovranty of the braves of 
Erin," quoth Bricriu, " if onIy thou act as I advise." 
" I wiU indeed," quoth Loigaire. 

§9. "Sooth, if the champion's portion of my 
house be thine, the championship of Emain is thine 
for ever. The champion's portion oí my house is 
worth contesting, for if is not the portion of a fool's 
house," quoth Bricriu. " Belonging to it is a cal- 
dron full of generous wine, with room enough for 
three of the valiant braves of Ulster ; furthermore, 
a seven-year-old boar ; nought has entered its lips 
since Ít was little save fresh millt and iine meal in 
springtime, curds and sweet milk in summer, the 
kernel of nuts and wheat in autumn, beef and broth 
in winter ; a cow-Iord íuU seven-year-oId ; since it 
was a little calf neither heather nor twig-tops have 
entered its lips, nought but sweet milk and herbs, 
meadow hay and coni. [Add to this] fivescore cakes 
of wheat, cooked in honey withal. Five-and-twenty 
bushels, that is what was supplied for these fivescore 
cakes — four cakes from each bushel. Such Ís the 

— tte 
of sov- 
— de- 


robronnad írisna cóic fichfiu bargen sin, ocus cethri 
bargein di cach mfach. Isse sin didiu cuTathmir mo 
thige" or Bricriu. " Úair Ís tussu l<éch as dech fil la 
\j\tu, is dait as cháir a thabairt, ocus is dait donúth- c 
racarsa. In tan iarom bas úrlam taisbenad inna flede 
deód lái, erged do ara-so súas, ocus bid dó doberthar 
in cuíathmir." " Beit fir marba and, ntí dogéntar 
samlaid" or hoegaire. Faftbestár Bricna la sodain, 
ocus bá maith lais a mcHma. j 

10. O roscáich do iarom imcossáit LoegaiW 3ua- 
daig, dolléic im budin ChonaiU Cherwa/^. " Maith 
sin," a Chonaill Cernaig" or Bricrí'/í, " is tii líéch na 
cernd ocus na comram. At móra na comrama dait 
sech ócu Ulad ol chena. In tan tiagat UWí/for cricha j 
echtrand, udi tri lá ocus tri n-aidche dait-siu remib íor 
áthaib ocus ilathaib. Tú dano tar a n-éssi dorísi oc á 
n-imdegail oc tichtain ass, conna torgethar sechut 
na treót na torot. Cid dait-siu iarom, nád bod latt 
curatkmír Emna MacAa do grÁ ? " Cer bo raór trá , 
ammuinbech dorat im LoegiwVí, dorat a da cutr«mmai 
im Conall Cemach. 

11. lar n-imchossáit Conaill Cernaig áó iarom ama/ 
robo data lais, dolléci im budin Conculaind. " Maith 
sin," or se, "a Chuculaind, a cathbúadaig Breg, a , 
Ugbrataig Liphe, a macdretill Em««, a lennáííi ban 
ocus ingen, ní lesainm dait indiu Cúcuiaind, liair is 
tú fer aurbága fil la UIí«, dóeme ammórgr/ssa ocus 
ammóraurgala, ocus saiges a chert do Qsch óen la 
UI/«, ocus ní nad roichet \3\aid uli, rosoichi-siu 
th'óenur, ocus addaimet fir \\E.Tend uli do gail ocus " 
do gaisced ocus do gníma liassaib. Cid dait-siu iarom 
in czaratkmir do lécud dó nách aile do \}\taib, uair 

' beidit, lí. " tiagta, H; tiaghiha, L; tfagait, LU. 

" doridisi, H. ** a lendain, H. 


champion's portion of my house. And since thou 
art the best hero among the raen of Ulster, it is but 
just to give it thee, and I so wish it, By the end 
oí the day, when the feast is spread out, let thy 
charioteer get up, and it is to him the champion's 
portion will be given." "Among them shall be dead 
men if it is not done so," quoth Loigaire. Bricrtu 
laughed at that, for it litced him well, 

§ 10. When he had done inciting Loigaire the 
Triumphant to enmity, Bricriu betooli himself into 
the corapany o£ Conall the Victorious, "Hail to thee, 
Conali the Victorious, thou art the hero of victories 
and of combats ; great are the victories thou hast 
already scored over the heroes of Ulster. By the 
time the Ulster men go into foreign bounds thou art 
a distance of three days and three nights in advance 
over many a ford ; thou protectest their rear when 
returning, so that [an assailant] may not spring past 
thee, nor through thee nor over thee ; what then 
should hinder the champion's portion of Emain being 
thine alway?" Though great his treachery with 
regard to Loigaire, he showed twice as much in the 
case of Conall the Victorious. 

§ II. When he had satisfied himself with Ínciting 
Conall the Victorious to quarrel, he hied to fhe 
presence of Cuchulainn. " Hail to thee, Cuchulainn, 
thou victor of Bregia {i.e. Bray), thou bright banner 
of the LÍ£fey, darhng of Emain, belov'd of wives and 
of maidens, for thee to-day Cuchulainn is no nick- 
name, for thou art the champion of the Ulster men, 
thou wardest off their great feuds and frays, thou 
seeltest justice for each man of them ; thou attainest 
alone to what all the Ulster men fail in ; all the men 
of Ulster acknowledge thy bravery, thy valour and 
thine achievements surpassing theirs. What meaneth 




ní túalaing nech di feraib hErend a chosnam írit ?" 
"Tong a toing mo thúath \mmorro," or Cuculaind, 
" bid cfa cen chend int£ doraga día chosnam frim 1 " 
Scaraid dano BricriH friu iar sodain, ocus do th^t hi 
comaitecht a slóig, ama/ na d^mad eter Ín n-imchos- 5 

12. Lotár Íarom dochom in tige, corragaib cách a 
lepaid and issind rlgthig, eter ríg ocus rlgdomna ocus 
airig ocus ócthigernd ocus maccóemu. Leth in tige 
iarom do Conchobar co láthaib gaile íer n-Ulad immi, lo 
ocus alleth n-aiU do bantrocht Ulím^im Mugain ingin 
EchacA Fedhg, mnaf Conchob«í>. Batir hé iamm 
bátár im Chonchoóur i n-airinuch in tige, i. Fergus 
mac Róich, CeUchar míic Uthec/iair, Eogan mac Dur- 
tkackl, ocus da mac ind rig i. FÍacha ocus Ffachaig, 15 
Fergna mac Findchóime, Fergus mdc Leti, Cúscraid 
Mc«d Macha mac Conchobair, Sencha mac Ailella, 

tri mníc Fiachach i. Rus ocus Dáre ocus Imchad, 
Muinremur mac Geirrgind, Errge Echbél, Amorgene 
míic Ecit, Mend mac Salchad^, Dubtach Dóel UW, 20 
Feradach Find Fectnach, Fedelmid mac Ilairchetní^, 
Furbaide Ferbend, Rochad mac Fathemo», Loegairé 
Búadach, Conall Cernach, Ciiculaind, Connad mac 
Mornai, Erc mac Fedelmthe, llland mac Fergusa, 
Fintan mac NeiII, Ceternd mac Fintain, Factna mac 25 
Sencada, Conla S^b, AiIiII MÍItenga, Bricriu fodein 
ocus fíimina láth n-gaili Ulaí/ ar cena^ocus a miiccíem 
ocus a n-assa dána. 

13. Ardopetet iartJíw a n-tés ciéil ocus airfite, céin 
both oc taisbenad na flede dóib. O rotaisfeóin iarom 30 

3 cia. H. 
c ilairched-, li; Chilair Chétaig, Ll/. 



therefore thy leaving of the champion's portion for 
some one else of the men of Ulster, since no one of 
the men of Erin is capable of contesting it against 
thee ? " " By the god of my tribe," quoth Cuchulainn, 
"his head shall he lose whoso comes to contest Ít wifh 
me." Thereaíter Bricriu severed himself from them 
and íollowed the host as if no contention had been 
made among the heroes. 

§ 12. Whereupon they entered the patace, and The 
each one occupied his couch therein, king, prince, ^°^ °^ 
noble, yeoman, and young brave. The half of Branch 
the palace was set apart for Conchobar and his a-gueBt- 
retinue oí vahant Ulster heroes ; the other half [was ins^tli 
reserved] for the ladies of Ulster attending on Mugan, 
daughter of Eochaid Fedlech, wife of King Conchobar. 
The following were those who attended upon Con- 
chobar in the fore-part of the palace, naraely, Fergus 
mac Róig, Celtchar son of Uthechar, Eogan son of 
Durthact, and the two sons of the king, namely, 
Fiacha and F^achaig, Fergna son of Findchoim, 
Fergus son of Leti, Cuscraid the-stuttering-oí-Macha, 
son of Conchobar, Sencha son of AiliU, the three 
sons of Fiachach, nainely, Rus and Dáre and Imchad, 
Muinremur son of Geirrgind, Errge Echbél, Amor- 
gene son of Ecit, Mend son of Salchad, Dubtach 
Doel Ulad, Feradach Find Fectnach, Fedelraid mac 
Ilair Chetaig, Furbaide Ferbend, Rochad son of 
Fathemon, Loigaire (Leary) the Triumphant, Conall 
the Victorious, Cuchulainn, Connad son of Mornai, 
Erc son of Fedelmid, IUand son of Fergus, Fintan 
son of Nial, Ceternd son of Fintan, Factna son oí 
Sencad, Conla the False, AÍIill the Honey-tongued, 
Bricriu himself, the chief Ultonian warriors, with the 
body of youths and artistes. 

§ 13. While the feast was being sprcad for them. 


énlaith glegel alleth n-aile di cailc na scíath. Foceird 
armgrith mór arrígthech la sodain, ocus rocrithnaij 
ind láith gaile, ocus rofergaigestar Conchobaf fodessin 
ocus Fergus mac Róig oc ascin ind étúalaing ocus ind 
anfír, i. in días do gabáil immon n-óenfer, i. Conall 5 
Cernach ocus Loegaire Biiadac/c im Choiiiculaind. Ní 
rabi la Ultu íer no lamad a n-etargaire, co n-epert 
Sencha fri Conchobwr: " Etarscar na firu" or se ; 
ar is é dfa lalmanda robói oc UIAj/í ind inbuid sin ConcAoíiír.'* 

16. Dolluid ConcAohur ocus Fergus etarro iarom. 10 
Dollécet a láma la tóeb fó chetóir, "Dénaid mo 
reir-se" or Senir^i. "Dogenam-ne" ol seat. " Isf 
mo rfar-sa didtu," or Sencha, " in cauraíkmír ucut " ol 

se "do fodail fón slóg uile innocht ocus techt immi 
iar sudiu irréir n-Aiiel/a maic Mágach, ar bid aingcess 15 
la Ulía in dal so do gleód, mani brethaigther hi 
Cruachnaib." FodaÍIter iar sudiu bíad ocus lind dóib, 
ocus tairmchell dáiltenid leó, ocus gabsus meisce, 
ocus bátar failte. 


17. Briccn'M dawíí ocus a rígan ina grianán. Bá 20 
íoderc dó iarom assa Ímdui sutdigud ind rígthige, amd/ 

ro both and, Ro scrút inna mewmain, cinnas doragad 
ar imchossait na m-ban, amo/ dorigni imcossait inna 
fer, In tan iarom roscáig do BricríW a scrutan ina 
míwmain, ^mal doragad airi, ba sí úair in sin dolluid 25 
Fedelm Nóichride cáecaií ban asind rígthig immach 

* Gloss of Christian scribe, 

' do calcib na scieth, Eg. 

° talmanda, H; lalmaide, LU ; dia ííii, Eg. 

' Conchobur, om. Eg. " uccot, Eg. "■ ainces, Eg. 

'* tairmcell dailtened leo, Eg; tarimcell dailteined leó, H. 
^ romboth, H. ^ Búcrindom. Eg. 




attacking Cuchulainn. There was no one among the 
Ultonians who dared separate them till Sencha spalce 
to Conchobar : " Part the men," quoth he. [For at 
that period, among the Ultonians, Conchobar was a 
god upon earth.]* 

§ i6. Thereupon Conchobar and Fergus inter- 
vened, [the combatants] immediately let drop their 
hands to their sides. " Execute my wish," quoth 
Sencha. " Your will shall be obeyed," they responded. 
" My wish, then," quoth Sencha, " is to-night to divide 
the Champion's Portion there among all the host, and 
after that to decide with reference to it according to 
the wiU of Aiiill mac Magach, for it is accounted 
unlucky among the men of Ulster to close this 
assembly unless the matter be adjudged in Crua- 
chan." The feasting was then resumed ; they made 
a circle round the fire and got 'iovial' and made 


§ 17. Bricriu, however, and his queen were in 
their soller. From his couch the condition of the 
palace was observable to him, and how things were 
going on withal. He exercised his mind as to how 
he should contrive to get the women to quarrel 
as he had likew!se incited the men. When Bricriu 
had done examining his mind, it just chanced as 
he could have wished that Fede!m-of-the-fresh- 
heart came from the palace with fifty women 
in her tmin, in mood hilarious. Bricriu observed 
her coming past him. " Hail to thee to-night, 
* Gloss of the Christian scribe. 


bar and 










iar tremini óil, Addaci Briccnw sechai. 
innocht, a ben L.oegairi Búadaig, ni 

" Maith sin 
lesainm dait 
dano Fedelm NóichrÍífe ar febas do chrotha ocus do 
ceiUe ocus do ceníiíí'l. Conchob«r ri cóicid hFrend 
do atha(>, hoegaire BuatAtírí do chéle, acht nammá 5 
ní bo ró Hm dait, conna tissad nech di mnaib V\ad 
ríut hi Tech Midchilarda, ocus co m-bad hit farsála no 
beth bantrocht Uloíí uile. Bá tú theis isatech ar thus 
innocht, doroimle caidche áis banrígnacht úas ban- 
trocht UW uh." Téit ass Fedeltn la sodain tar teóra 1° 
fuithairbe ón tig. 

18, Tic immach iar sin Lendabair ingen Eógain 
moic Derthacht, ben Conaill Cemaig. Atgládastar 
dawí' BrÍcrtM, co n-epírt : " Maith sin, a Lendabair," 

or se, "ní lesainm dait ind Lendabair, at banlendan 15 
ocus at xaenchoxíí'^xc fer n-domain uli, ar do áine ocus 
t'urdarcus. A n-ed ruc do chéli di ócaib domo/'« ar 
gaisciud ocus cruth, roucaiseo di mnaib UW." Cid 
mór tra a muinmec dorat im FedU'»/, dorat a dá 
cutramma im Lennabiíí'r fó a n-innas cetna, 20 

19. Dolluid Emer immach ío sodain céecait ban, 
"Slan seiss, a Emer ingen Forgaill Manach!" ol 
Bric««, "a ben ind fir as dech i n-Ére. Ni lesainm 
dait ind Emer Foltcháin, is húariud do rfgaib ocus 
rígdoranaib \iF.xend immut. A n-ed rucc grlan do 25 
rennaíb nime, rucaisiu de mnáib domain ule, ar chruth 
ocus deilb ocus cen/I, ar óiti ocus áni ocus irdarcus, 

ar allud ocus érgna ocus aurlabra." Cíar bo mór trá 
a mainbech dorat im na mná aile, dorat a thri chom- 
raéit im Emir. 30 

' duit dó, Eg. * nir bo ró lem, H. 

' Toroimle co haidne Eeis, Eg; ca aidne, Z, 
bannrignochia, H. '* Lenabair, Ll/. 

" domó, LU; anedruch, LC/,- do (Scaib, LU. 
^" a da qhutmmíe, £gi a da cudruma, //; a d 




wife of Loigaire the Triumphant ! Fedelm-oí-the- 
fresh-heart is no nicltname for thee with respect 
to thine excellency of íorm and of wisdom and of 
lineage. Conchobar, king of a province of Erin, is 
thy father, Loigaire the Triumphant thy husband ; 
I should deem it but small honour to thee that any 
of the Ulster women should take precedence of thee 
in entering the banqueting hall ; on!y at thy heel 
should all Ultonian woraen tread. If thou comest 
first into the hall to-night, the sovranty oí queen- 
ship shalt thou enjoy íor ever over all the ladies oí 
Ulster." Fedelm anon takes a leap over three ridges 
from the hall. 

§ 18. Thereafter came Lendabair, daughter of 
Eogan mac Derthacht, wife of Conall the Victorious, 
Bricriu addressed her and spake : " Hail to thee, 
Lendabair ; for thee that is no nicfcname ; thou art 
the darhng and pet of all mankind on account of thy 
splendour and of thy lustre. As far as thy spouse 
hath surpassed all the heroes of mankind in valour 
and in comeliness, so far hast thou distinguished thy- 
self above the women of Ulster." Though great the 
deceit he apphed in the case of Fedelm, he applied 
twice as much in the case of Lendabair, 

§ 19, Eraer came out anon with half-a-hundred 
women [in her train]. "Greeting and hail to thee, 
Emer, daughter of Forgall Manach (F. the tricky 
or shifty), wife of the best wight in Erin ! Emer of 
the Fair Hair is for thee no nickname; Erin's kings 
and princes contend for thee in jealous rivalry. As 
the sun surpasseth the stars of heaven, so far dost 
thou oiitshine the women oí the whole world in form 
and shape and lineage, in youth and beauty and 
elegance, in good name and wisdom and address." 


20, Tíagait ass iarom na teóra buidni, co m-batár 
i n-óen magin, i. teóra íuithairbi on tig, ocus ni fití'r 
nech díb for araile a n-irachossait do "Bricrmd. 
Dothífegat dia tig la sodain. Tochim fossad n-álaind 
n-inmalla issin chetna fuitherbe, isiwg ma roíuc nech 5 
díb a choiss sech araile. Ind fuithairbe tsnaise im- 
morro, bá miniu ocus bá lúathiu a n-imtecht íssudiu, 
Ind lux^airbe immorro ba nessu don tig, iss amlaid 
ruc cach ben dia seitche ar écin ocus tuargabsat a 
lénte co mellaib a lárac do imchosnom dul isatech lo 
ar thús, úair iss eií atrubairt Búcriu fri cach le timchell 
araile, issi robad banrígan in chóicid uli inti dib cétna 
ragad issatech. Ba sí méit a íothraind tra oc im- 
chossnara techta ar thossaig cách ríana chéli, ama/ 
bid fothrond coecat carpííí dothisad and, co forcroth 15 
a rígthech n-uile, ocus co raeblangtár ind laith gaile 
dia n-gaiscíW, co folmastar cach dib aidid a chéle 

21. " Anaid," or Sencha, " n{ dat námait táncatár, 
acht is Bricnw dorat imcossáit eter na mná dochótar 20 
immach. Tong a toing rao thúath," or se, "mani 
íatar a tech friú, bít lia ar mairb and andaiti ar m-bí." 
íadait na dorsaide in comla la sodain, Rosaig Emer 
ingen Forcaill Mánach ben Conculaind ar lúas ríasna 
mnáib aile, co tard a druim írisin comlaid, ocus co 25 
n-arlastár úadi na dorsaide rfasin m-bantrocht or 

' búd, L17; buidni, Eg-. * toichim, £f. 

^ asH ingma rucc, Eff; is ing ma rouc, L; isig marac, /f; 
•i\g,Ll/. '<' a laurc, E^; a da larc, //; Ín da laarc, L. 

" ce se, £g ; ca íe, N. " co bfolmastar, /f, 

" nitat namaid, E^; tangatar anti, E^: 

™ itiV na mnaih, E^. ^' Tonguste atoinge m tuath, E^. 

^ bith lia ar mairb andaiti ar m-bi, Eg; bidh lia ar maitbh arm 
andaiti armbi, /f; bit lia a mairb and andat a mbi, L(/; b- ha ar 
mairb inaid ar mbi, L. ^ co tarat, E_^; comla, Eff. 


Though great his deceit in the case of the other 
ladies, in that of Emer he apphed thrice as much. 

§ 20. The three companies thereupon went out 
till they met at one spot, to wit, three ridges from 
the hall. None of them wot that Bricriu had in- 
cited them one against another. To the hall they 
straightway return. Even and graceful and easy their 
carriage on the first ridge ; scarcely did one of them 
raise a foot before the other. But on the ridge íollow- 
ing, their steps were shorter and quiclter. Moreover, 
on the ridge next the house it was with difficulty each 
kept up with the other ; so they raised their robes to 
the rounds of their hmbs to compete in the attempt 
to go first into the hall. For what Bricriu said to 
each of them regarding the other was, that whosoever 
should first enter should be queen of the whole pro- 
vince. The amount of confusion then occasioned 
by the competition to enter the hall íirst was as it 
were the noise of fifty chariots approaching. The 
whole palace shook and the warriors sprang to their 
arms and made essay to kill one another within. 

§ 21. " Stay," quoth Sencha, " they are not enemies 
who have come ; it is Bricriu who has set a-quarrelling 
the women who have gone out. By the god of my 
tribe, unless the hali be closed against them our dead 
wiU outnumber our living." Thereupon the door- 
keepers close the doors. Emer, daughter of Forgall 
the Wily, wife of Cuchulainn, by reason of her speed, 
outran the others and put her back against the door, 
and straightway called upon the doorfceepers ere 
the other ladies [came], so that the men within got 
up, each of them to open for his own wife that she 


chena, co n-érget na fir isintig la sodain, cach ter diib 
do oslogud rlana mnái, co ra-bad a ben cetna tísad 
issatech ar thús. " Bid olc ind adaig" or Conchobur. 
Benaid a cló n-argit robói ina láim frisin n-uaítni 
créduma inna imda, co n-desitar in t-slúaig inna sudi. 5 
"Anaid," or Sencha, "ni ba cath co n-gaiscíWí/ do- 
gentar sund, acht bid cath co m-briathniíí la soáaitt." 
Tolluid cach ben fo chóim a céli ammaig, conid 
andsin dorónsat in hnaXharchalh Ban-UW. 

Bríatharcath na m-ban in so. 
22. Pisheri Fedelm Nóicride hen hoegairi Bmdaig- : 10 
[R.] " Cotombírt-sa bril sóer sruith dim chlaind com- 
cinsiu di churp ríg sceó rígnai richt forcáini 

conid cruth buidech bet^r úaim nóithium cruth 15 

consert la feba féne fogart geinsiu genas 
luchthond lámderg Loegaire 
lín ih-band m-balcbúada heras ar fath n-Ulad 
aurslaid crt'cha comnart comnámat cen Ultu 30 

' afir, LU; cach fir diib, LU; conergit afir isji'ntoich la sod- 
cecli fer dib, E^. * issintech, £ff. 

* benaid, £^; an clo, E^j frissind uaithne, Eg; imdaige, ££: 

' íb chomair, £^; fo comair a ceile, /f; fo coim, L. 

■ bánulai?; ££■; banulai/, //. '" Fedlim, Eg: 

" Cottambertsa, E£; do claind cotnchineoil, Eg. 

" do churp, E^; forchaine cosiad, E^. 

'* beror, E^; noithium, ££■; truth coin, Eg: 

" gensiu g-enas luchtdonn, £5^ ; luchdonn, i; foghart geinisiu 
genas lucthonn, //. " m-buada, ££■; mbalc mbuadha, Jí. 

" arslaig cricha comnamat cen Ulrt* imme, Eg; H. omits 


might be the first to come within. " Bad [look-out] 
to-night," quoth Conchobar. He struck the silver 
sceptre that was in his hand against the bronze pillar 
of the couch and the íolks gat seated. "Stay," quoth 
Sencha, "'tis not a warfare of arms that shall be held 
here ; it will be a warfare of words." Each woman 
went out under the protection oí her spouse, and then 
íollowed the Ulster women's war-of-words. 

The Women's War of Words. 

§ 22. Fedelm of the íresh heart, wife oí Loigaire : 
the Triumphant, made speech : — ' 

" Born of a raother in freedom, one in rank and in ] 

race mine elders; 
Sprung from loins that are royal, in the beauty of 

peerless breeding; 
Lovely in form I am reckoned, and noted for figure 

and come!y, 
Fostered in warrior virtues, in the sphere of goodly 

demeanour : 
Loigaire's hand, all-noble, what triumphs it scoreth 

for Ulster I 
Ulster's marches írom foemen, ever equal in strength, 

ever hostile — 
All by himself were they holden : from wounds a 

defence and protection, 
Loigair(e), more famous than heroes, in number of 

victories greater, 
Why should not Fedelm the lovely step first in the 

mead-hall so festive, 
Shapelier than all other women, tiiumphant and jealous 

of conquest ? " 


Imúsdích immustecrathar imgoin 

airdiu airdercu Isechaib Loegaire. 

lín a buada bías úas cech tóch. 

Cid nab sí» Fedelm-sa Findchóem chruth- 

búadach búageltach 5 

cichsfí/ r(a cach mnái hi Tech Midchúarda 

23. Asbcrt Lendabair la sodain ingen Eógain maic 
Dertacht ben Chonaill Cernaig maic Amorgeni: 
[R.] "Ar is mése crúth chéiU chongraimmim 10 

coiblethar céim cruth cáin caurchasta 
i Tech Midchúarta rJg ría mnáib Ulad. 
Ar is mo chéle cifem Conall coscorach credmair 
coibledar céim n-ard n-adguide 
i n-uchtu ergal n-eirrind ría cach. 15 

Cáin tintaí chucum co cernaib co cennaib 
con ruccai calca cruáids comraicthi U\ad 
arsaid cach n-áth conid día thuil tfrowglai 
arslaithi a n-áthu arfich a n-gressu 
comaig Iréch arabí lecht liác 20 

laimethar m<7C áin Amorgewi accalldaim 

' airri aird^rca, E^; airriu, L[/; airri, //. 

' lín a buad, £g-; lin mbuada, //. 

' Cid nab- si an Fedlim si, £g^; cnith buadach buadgeitoch, 
£g; biiaigeltach, /f. 

* cichsed ria ceirí mnai a tech medrach Midchuartae, £g. 

' Asmbert, £^. ' Aimergin, Eg. 

" coibletaí' ceimm cruth csein curcasta, £g. 
" ricc ria mnaibh Ulad uile, Eg. 

"* cosgrach credmar, Eg; cf. coscorach cridemail in § 52. 
•* coiplethar, Eg; coibletar, H. " ind •acht ergal, Eg. 

" coin tinntaid cugam co cemaip, £g. 
^" cruaide comruicthe, £g. 

'8 arsaidh, L ; conad dia tul íglai, Eg; arslaid, H (the / put in 
as a correction) ; tglaf, LU ; fglai, H. 

" asrlaith, L; arsiaidh, £g; arslaid, H. 

* contaig IfEch ara bi, Eg. ^ accaldaim otn., Eg; cain, H. 



I 23. Thereupon spafce Lendabair, daughíer of 
Eogan mac Derthacht, wiíe of Conall Cernach, son 
of Amorgen : — 

" Mine is a mien too of beauty, of reason, with grace 

of deportment, 
Finely and fairly stepping in front of the women of 

See me step to the mead-hall, my spouse and my 

darling the Conall. 
Big is his shield and triumphant, majestic his gait and 

Up to the spears of the conflict, in front of them all 

as he strideth : 
Back to me comes he proudIy, wifh heads Ín his hands 

as his trophies ; 
Swords he getteth together for the clashing in con- 

aict of Ulster ; 
Guardian of every ford-way, he destroyeth them too 

at his pleasure ; 
Fords he defendeth from foemen, the wrongful attack 

he avengeth, 
Holdeth himself as a hero upon whom shall be raiséd 

a tombstone : 
Son of Amórgen noble, his is the courage that 

speaketh ; 
Many the arts oí the Conall and therefore he leadeth 

the heroes. 
Lendabair, great Ís her gIory, in every one's eye is her 

splendour ; 
Why not the first when she enters the hall of a king 

so queenly ? " 


ar is Conall ar lín a cherd cinges ría cach líech. 
Cid nabb sin Lendabair-se lí súla cáich 
cichsed ría cach mnai hi tech r(g." 
24. Asbert Emer ingen P'orgaill Manach ben 
ConculaÍnd: 1 

[R.] " Cotomgaba-sa chéim cruth cheill congraim- 

coibliud biiíada báigthir cach delb cháin chuc^m 
conid mo rosc sóer setta dóine dom gnúis gné 
ní fríth cruth ná córai ná congraim 
ni írith gáís ná gart ná genus. 
ní frith luth seirce sóerligi na celle conomthic-se 
ar is immum-sa ochsatar Ulaid uile 
is mé a cnú chridi glé diammbé-se bféth ffade- 

Nimmar mbith ben úadib lia céle on trath sa 

co alaile 
is Cuculaind mo chéle ní cú ches 
crithir íola for a crund. 

cobur íola for a claediub : 

Cáin forondar a chorp hi crú 
créchta ina cháin cnis 
álta ina thóeb liss 
cáin feid a rosc rochéim inna chend siar 

' a cerd no a cem, Eg. ^ Cid nab- si, Eg; H. omiis cáich, 

^ cichsead, Eg. * Asmbcrt, Eg. 

' ceim cruth ceÍU congtaimw, Eg. 

8 baidther, Eg; cain cugam, Eg. * conad, Eg; seta, H. 

" luth seirci saorhghe na gile na ceille conam ticisi, Eg; 
soergile, H. '^ ochsathor, Eg. 

" diambese die mbese (jiV) b;eth fiadetarlae, Eg; beith fiadetar 
liumm mar bith ben uaidib lia cele . . . H; lie, Eg. 

'^ nimmar bid, £g ; colaile, Eg. '* ni cu cichis, Eg. 

^' Cain íoronáoT a corp a cru, Eg. '^ cr^acht, Eg. 

^ cain feith a roscc rochain ina chind {om. siar), Eg; om. siar, H. 


§ 24. Emer, daughter of Forgall the tricky, wife of 
Cuchulainn, made speech : — 
" I am the standard of women, in figiire, in grace and 

in wisdom ; 
None mine equal in beauty, for I am a picture of 

Mien fuU noble and goodIy, mine eye like a jewel íhat 

aasheth ; 
Figure, or grace, or beauty, or wisdom, or bounty, 

or chasteness, 
Joy oí sense, or of loving, unto mine has never been 

Sighing for me is Ultonia, — a nut oí the heart I am 

clearly — 
(Now were I welcoming wanton, no husband were 

yours ío-morrow.) 
My spouse is the hound of Culann, and not a hound 

that is feeble ; 
Blood írom his spear is spurting, with life-blood his 

sword is dripping ; 
Finely his body is fashioned, but his skin is gaping 

with gashes, 
Wounds on his thigh there are many, but nobly his 

eye looks westward ; • 
Bright is the dome he supporteth and ever red are 

his eyen, 
Red are the frames of his chariot, and red are also 

the cushions ; 
Fighting írom ears of horses and over the breaths of 


•■ This is a mythic reference to Cuchulainn as sun-hero. 


cáin fuátaing fuither glaini 

sírderg a sella 

ógdérg 3. fonnaid 

fordeirg a fortgea 

arfich ó áib ech ocus analaib fer í 

íoceird ích n-erred ind áib 

atetha cles dond cless dail cless n-eóin 

immelig loa usci atetha cless nonbair 

conboing catha cróchombág 

falgai betho borrbuidne 1 

brissid úath nadarccna 

is fer seirgeis illigu 

is crón chutnia cúaride 

iss i richt mná siúil sedda Ulín/ uh 

corrici mo chéle-se Coinculaind i 

cró dond glé sin samlait/> 

at salaig úantaínd athúanaind chrisalaíg 

at gairb chaithlig at cróna cutramma 

at crothle garmíUne at búanaind bodelbae 

is irrechtaib bo ocus dam ocus ech : 

settai mná UWuli conomthici-sea." 

' Cain fualaing fuider glaini {em. sair), Eg; fiiider glain 
isair, //j glaini sair, LU. * foirtchi, Eff. 

* arfichaib ech 7 analaib, E^ (between í and e there is what 
might have been an / much feded ; Wind. wrongly read " a 
fichaib"; arfich oiblech ocus analaib, If ; arfich tíiblech ocus 

' íacherd ich neirrírf nindaib, £^. 

' immasleig loa uisqi ateta cles nonbnir, Eg-; immeilg, //. 
"' &.Igaib betha buidni, E^; falgaibetho, H; falgaib etho, Lí/. 
'^ sergis illigiu, £g. '^ cron cutma, E^. 

" issi ixciucAt mna siul sedda, Eg: 
" cron donn gle sin, /í; samlaithíV, Eg. 
" at saloi^f uanainn atanaind crisalaif, £g; om. athúanaind, H. 
■' cutn.mnis, íf. 

'* garmanline, Eg; bo delpai, Eg; garmaline ambuanaind, H. 
*" irriuchtaib, H. ^' sedda, Eg; seddai, H; conamticcise, Eg. 


Springing in air like a salmon when he springeth the 

spring of the heroes, 
Rarest of íeats he performeth, the leap that is bird- 

hke he leapeth, 
Bounding o'er pools of water, he performeth the feat 

cíess nonbair ; * 
Battles of bloody battalions, the world's proud armies 

he heweth, 
Beating down kings in their fury, mowing the hosts 

of the foemen. 
Others to crón\ I Iiken, shamraingí the travail oí 

Ulster's precious heroes compared with my spouse 

He unto blood may be likened, to blood that is clear 

and noble, 
They to the scum and the garbage, as cron their value 

I reckon ; 
Shackled and shaped like cattle, § as kine and oxen 

and horses, 
Ulster's precious women beside the wife of Cuchu- 


* lii. feat of nine. 

+ Some metalof inferior value. 

\ Emer, who is represented as coming from the Cehic province 
of Meath, alludes to the Ultonian couvade. She imphes those 
Ulster heroes were shams. 

§ bodelbae= cow-shapes, may refer to some oltl practice of cow- 
worship ; cf. the Burghead stones. 


25. La sodain ba ed dogensat ind fir batar sintig, i. 
LoegaiVí ocus Conall Ce^nach, o roleblaing a lua« 
laith iar closin iraacalltna na m-ban, robrisiset cleith 
di clethaib ind rigthige fo a comartus immach, conid 

si' [sin] conar dollotar a raná chucu Ísintech. Cucu- 5 
laind 'vmmorro tuargaib a tech i n-aurchomair a imdái, 
comtar foderci renna niraí fon fraigid iramach anis, 
con\id] si sin conar doUuid a ben-sooí ocus cóeca ban 
cecthar de na da ban aiH ocus cóeca ban a mná fodéin, 
conna bad cutrummus disí frisna mna aili, uair nir bo 10 
chutrummus do-sora fri cách. DoUecÍ Cuculaind 
arr(gthech sís iar sudi, co n-dechatar secht ferchubat 
di fenamain in tige i talmain, co forcroth a n-dún uli 
ocus cor trascair gríanan 'Qúcrend fri lár i^lmaM, co 
torcair Bricn'w fodein ocus a rígan, corrabatar isind 15 
otruch for lar ind lis et^r na conaib. " Aill araai " for 
Bncn'u " tancatar námait a n-dún," la eirgi súas co 
opund. Co rolá cor immá« rigthech, co n-acca ama/ 
rocloénad a thech, conda tarla íor a lethbeolu uli. 
Adsoirg a bossa la sodain ocus leicthe isatech iar sudi, 20 
ocus ni rabi la UI/« fer asaithgned ama/ rosalchad, 
conid ína labrad atgenatar. 

26. Ashert BricríM friu íarcm do lar in tigi : "Nim- 
' issin tig Laeg. B. ocus Conall C, Eg. 

" rusleblaing, L ; roisleab-, //. * iar cluais imagatl-, E^. 

' conad sisin, Eg; conid si sin conair, /f. 

" ina urcomair, * conadh sisin, Eg-; consisin, ZC/. 

* na da ban aile co na ba cutrumaí disi fris na mnaib uair nior 
bo cliudrum/íj' die íir frisna Rtx aile, E^. " cuthrammus, !.(/. 

" Tollecce C. in rigteuch, Eg^. 

'- connleuchwílaí- VII uCsrcuboit, Eg; co forcroith in daun 
n-uile, Eg; fenamain Stokes, Rem. on the Facs. p, 13, senamain, 
LU, Eg; di senmain, H. " cor trascair, Eg; for lar, Eg. 

" co torchair B. bodein ocus a righan, Eg; co torcair for 
lar, //. '° issin otrach chacae for !ar, Eg; isind otruch chaca, 

//; isand otrach cacai, L. '' co rollá cor imma rigteuch, Eg. 

" contarriae for a leith beulse {om. uli), Eg. " assoirg, Eg; 

;g, /i. ^ tolleicti, Eg. " assaitgned amail, Eg. 

m toUar in tiíce, Eg; nimatarcomlajae fleud, Eg. 



§ 25. Thus did the men in the hall behave on 
having heard the laudatory addresses of the women — 
to wit, Loigaire and Conali ; each sprang into his 
hero's light, and broke a stave of the palace at a like 
level with themselves, so that in fhis way their wives 
came in. Moreover, Cuchulainn upheaved the palace 
just over against his bed, till the stars of heaven 
were to be seen from underneath the wattle. By 
that opening came his own wife with half a hundred 
women attendants in her train, as also half a hun- 
dred in waiting upon the other twain. Other ladies 
could not be compared with Emer, while no one 
at all was to be likened unto her spouse. Thereupon 
Cuchulainn let the palace down till seven feet of 
the wattle entered the ground ; the whole dún shook, 
and Bricriu's batcony was laid flat to the earth, in 
such wise that Bricriu and his queen toppled down 
tiU they fell into ihe/osse in the middle of the court- 
yard among the dogs. "Woe is me," cried Bricriu, 
as he hastily got up, "enemies have come into the 
palace." He took a turn round and perceived how 
it was lop-sided and inclined entirely to one side. 
He wrung his hands, then betook hiraself within, 
so bespattered that none of the Ulster foIk could 
recognise him. From his manner oí speech only did 
they do so. 

§ 26. Then from off the fíoor of the house Bricriu 
made speech : " Alas I that I have prepared you a 
feast, O Ultonians. My house is more to me than 
all my other possessions. Upon you, therefore, it is 
geis to drink, or to eat, or to sleep till ye leave my 


ator-chomlod-sa fleid dúib tra, a XJltu" for se. " Is 
ansu lim-sa mo thech oldás mo trebad uli. Is geis 
dúib tra " ol Bncrjw " ól na longud na chotlud, co 
fargbaid mo thech-sa, ama/ íondrancaibair for bar 
cind." Atsregat laith gaile íer n-X]\ad uH asin tig la ; 
sodain ocus dobírat trlamnai don tig ocus nír thúar- 
gaibset cid co tisad géth etorro ocus iíXmain. Robo 
cheist íor \3\íu U2.n0 anf sin. " Nochonomtha-sa dáib" 
ol Sencha " acht in íer íodrácaib co clíen, aitchid fris 
a facbail co diriuch," ] 

27. Asb^atar \J\aid fri Coinculaind iar sudi a tech 
do dirgiud, ocus asbf^t Bric/-í« ,■ " A rí líéch n-'Erend," 
for se, " ma«i dirgi-siu co rop cóir, nocon fil isin 
domun nodndírgi," Doratsat \J\aid uli Írapidi fair 
im thúaslucud na cesta. Atsraig Cuculaind la sodain, i 
na betis íés na fledi cen ó\ cen tomoltus. Dorat ia.vom 
Cucalaind triam dia tarcbail ocus forémmid, Ro 
riastrad immi iarom iar sudi, co rabi banna fola im 
bun cacha iinna dó, ocus rosuíg a folt inna chend, 
corbo suas mEeldub demis [a] chas chirdub ba íorcsi ^ 
fair, ocus rongab imbrith brón ocus rósini iar sudi, 
co taillfed fertraig feroclaig eter cach da asna do. 

' Is auntsa, í^f. ^ nallonguti na. guodlsd, £^. 

* fondrarnecbabiíí' ar for cind, Eg ; fondrancabair, //. 

* ataregaut láit gaile Ul. uile, ££■; isin, LU. 

' ced . , . eter é ocus tal. Rop ces, H; Rop ceus don for UUt 
ind ni sin, E^. ' Nocham thasae, ££; nochomtasa dauib, //. 

* aitqi fris a fagbiii/ co direch, Eg; aittchidh, JI. 

" AsmbínatfW, E^. '^ do dirgad, £g. '^ asmbert, Eg; 

" main dirgeussu corab cóir ni con fil issin domun nod dirge, 
Eg; " Atlraich, Eg; atraigh, L; atraig, H. 

" \v.cht na fleidi . . . cen tomailt, Eg; H. " triamain, H. 

" forfeiín, Eg; fcnrofem, H; Ro riestrad imbi iersuidia combíei 
banno fote imm bun ceíA finda doa ocus rosuig a foit inda cheunt 
condemm (confldíe, Eg) suas mael cas cirdub ro bsei fair ocus 
rongab a brí bro ocus rosin iar suid/w co tuiUfed fer troig ferogiíwg 
etí^ cech da essnae do, Eg. 

'^ demischas, LU. 

2' rogab imbri bro, LU ; rongab ambribrofair, H. 



house as ye found it on your arrival." Thereupon all 
the valiant Ulstermen went out of the house and 
tried to tug it, but they did not raise it so much as 
that even the wind could pass between it and the 
earth. That matter was a dif&culty for the Ulster- 
men, " I have no suggestion for you," quoth Sencha, 
" save thaí ye entreat of hinv who has left it lop-sided 
to set it upright." 

§ 27. Whereupon the men of Ulster told Cuchu- 
lainn to restore the house to its upright position, and 
Bricriu made speech withal : " Oh king of the heroes 
of Erin, if thou set it not straight and erect, none 
in the world can do so," All the Ulstermen then 
entreated of Cuchulainn to solve the matter. That the 
banqueters might not be laclíing for food or for ale, 
Cuchulainn got up and anon tried to lift the house 
at a tug and failed. A distortion thereupon gat hoid 
of him, whilst a drop of biood was at the root of 
each single hair, and he absorbed his hair into his 
head, so that, ioolted on from above, his darlt-yeIIow 
curls seemed as ií they had been shorn by scissors, 
and talíing upon him the motion of a miiistone he 
strained himself till a warrior's foot could find room 
between each pair of ribs. 

§ 28. His natural resources and fiery vigour re- 
turned to him, and he then heaved the house aloft 
and set it so that it reached its former Íevel. There- 
after the consumption of the feast was pieasant to 
them, with the Itings and the chieftains on the one 
side round about Conchobar the illustrious, the noble 




28. Tancatar a ífes cnmachta ocus a lucht adantha 
na doch«m, ocus tuargaib a tech iar sudi ocus forruim 
co t'oc&íz dirgi fesin inna cetna. 


Ocus bá sam doib iarom oc tochatim na fledi, i. 
na ríg ocus na toisig isindarna leith im Concobur 5 
clothamra, im ardríg n-amra n-Ulad. Ind rigna im- 
morro isind leith araill, i. Mugain Aitenccetrech ingen 
Echach FedUg ben Conchobair mííí'c Nesa, Fedelm 
Nóicrothach ingen Concobair {i. nói crotha no tad- 
bantais íorri, ocus bá aildiu cach cruth araili), Fedelm 10 
Foltchain dawíJ ingen aih Conchobíiíy ben Loega/n' 
Buadaig, Findbec ingen Echach ben Chethirnd mtiíc 
Fintain, Bríg Brethach ben Celtchair maic Uthichair, 
Findige ingen Echach ben Eogain maí'c Durthacht, 
Findchiem ingen Cathbad ben Araargi« larngiunnaig, 15 
DerborcaiU ben Lugdach Riab n-derg maic na Tri 
Find Emna, Emer Foltchain ingen Forcaill Manach 
ben Conculaind m«/'c Sualdaim, Lendabair ingen 
Eógain mdic Durthacht ben ConaÍÍl C&maig, Niab 
ingen CeHchair míííC Uthechair ben Chormaic Cond- 20 
longas maic Concobair. Is ha t«rem tra ocus aisneis 
ina m-bói dí degmnáib and chena. 


29. Dorala in tech Ína ráithsechaib briathar oc na 
mnáib doridisi oc imarbaig e\er a feraib ocus siat 

' adartha, LU. 

Of § 28, Eg has only " tuargaib an tech iar suid/w ocus for- 
ruirim co ruatrAí a dirgi an ce/na." H hcre agrees wilh Eg in 
having of this section but the phrase "tuargníí a tecA iarsuidiu 
ocus famiujim comacht a dirghi Ín cetna." This chapter is 
abridged in L. 

§29. larsin tra coisctw an úoghenáh . . . gualaind. Ro fas 



high-líing of Ulster. Moreover, the queens were on 
the other side : Mugain Aitencaetrech, daughter of 
Eochaid Fedlech, wife oí Conchobar mac Nessa, 
Fedelm oí the nine-shapes, daughter oí Coiichobar, — 
nine "shapes" she couid assume, and each shape more 
IoveIy fhan the other ; also Fedelra of the Fair Hair, 
another daughter of Conchobar, wife of Loigaire the 
Triumphant; Findbec, daughter of Eochaid, wife of 
Cethirnd, son of Fintan ; Brig Brethach, wiíe of Celt- 
char, son of Uthichar ; Findige, daughter of Eochaid, 
wife of Eogan mac Dtirthacht ; Findchaem, daughter 
of Cathbad, wife of Amargin of the Iron Jaw, and 
Derborcall (DevorgÍIIa), wife of Lugad of the Red 
Stripes, son of Tri Find Emna ; Emer of the Fair 
Hair, daughter of Forcall Manach, wife of Cuchulainn, 
son of Sualdam ; Lendabair, daughter of Eogan mac 
Durthacht, wife of Conall the Victorious ; Niab, 
daughter of Celtchar mac Uthechar, wife of Cormac 
Condlongus, son of Conchobar. It would be over- 
much to recount and to declare who of noble dames 


§ 29. Once more the hall became a babel of Sencha 
words, the women lauding their i 
Conall and Loigaire and Cuchulainn to stir up dis- 
sension. Sencha, son of Ailill, got up and shook his 
sceptre. To him the Ultonians gave ear, and then 
to restrain the ladies he made speech ; — 
" I restraiii ye, ladies of Ulster, noble in name and 
Ín gIory ; 


fesni, co foímaiset ind fir comergi debtha dorísi, i. 
Conall ocus LoegíZíVcocusCucuIaind. Alracht Sencha 
mac Ailella ocus rocroith in craib Sencha, ocus con- 
tóiset Ulaid uh fris, conid and ashert-símii oc cosc inna 
m-ban : — 5 

[R.] "Cotobsechaim a táichessa ána aúrdairce air- 
egda Ulad. 
anat for ra-briatra bági na banait^r fergnúsi 
Íccruadaib comraicthib tria úalle a n-glond. 
ar is tria chin m-ban bit fernai fer dlochtai ^^ 

fir i n-irgalaib immad már galgat comlud ferglunni 
ar is dia m-brfgaib bísaib bés dóib 
dofurcbat nadíccat imsúidet nadraincet 
Cotobsechaim a laicesa ana urdairci." 
30. Is and asbírt Emer oc a írecra ; 15 

[R.] " Deithbir dam-sa a Sencha uair is am hen-ssi 
curad cáin 

. . . do mifostuiU] ocus Infedh . . . acosc namban ar se conabe 
olc idir na (iru. Cotobscchaim íox se . . . urdairce aireddha 
V\itd anat . . . na banaitír ferg'núisf Í cruadli comraicthib tre 
uailli ag . . . dlocbtain fir anurgalaib . . . comlud fer gluinní 
. . . doftircbat nad ricat imsaidhel nadraocet, f/. § 39 1« Éff: 
lersin tra coister in slog. Bfrid Sencha breith dina mnaib, i. 
Eim£r ar tus issinteuch ocus na di mnsi aile gualainn frie gua- 
lainn ind. Rofass dano indimarbáig chettnte dona timaib issintig 
iar riei:A/ain 'mdunaid. Bator iarom ind fir do mifostud ocus anfeith 
lasodiun caaeTTochi Senae ; cosc na m-ban ol se [co] na be olc 
iu'r nai firu. Cotaibsechaim for se a laichessa ana atderca. Vlad. 
Anaitt bur m-bagbriatra na banaitaigt (sic) fergnuissi i cruad com- 
raictib tríe uaill agu ar is trie chin m-ban bid fema feur dlocAfaitt 
fir in «rgalaib immat margalgat comluth fergluinde ar is die m- 
brigaib bíesaib bes doib dofurgbait natriccait Ímsuidet nadrancit. 
C5. Eg-; dlochtain . . . comlud . . . dofurcbat nadricat imsaidhet 
nadrancet, //; nadrairget, Ll/; c/. g 28, where adartha Ís for 
adantha. It seems dialectal. ' and " cotobsechai, LU. Facs. 

" bam bensai curad cain comrmaich, L; basam bensa, H. 

g 3a DeithbiV damsas ón a Senchíe for Eimír bassa bensa 
ciíraid cain cot r-gabuj cruth ceill orodamned a forcetal gan 
dichell etír cles for anakií ocus uball cl« ocus siabarcles el 



Cease ye yQur words of contention, lest the mien of 

men foIk be paler, 
In Iteenness of conflict striving, amid vainglorious 

combat ; 
Throiigh guile of women, meseemeth, men's shields 

are wont to be splintered, 
In frays the hosts of the heroes are oft contending 

in anger ; 
To woman's whims it is owing this use and wont 

among men foIk — 
They bruise what there's no upbinding, and attack 

what they have noí attained to : 
Heroines gallant and glorious, and noble ones, I 

restrain ye." 

§ 30. Then Emer spake and made answer : — 
" Fitting for me, meseemeth, to speak as the wife oí 

a hero 
Who combineth in natural union graces of mind and 

of body, 
Since ever his teaching was finished and learning to 

him came easy.* 



None will be íound who will equal his age, his 
growth, and his splendour : 
* Here foUows an enumeration of Cuchulainn's feats. It is not 
easy to figure them mentally with accuracy, so that we can be sure 
we know what we are spealcing about : word for word they mean : — 
both over-breath-feat, apple-feat, ghost- (or sprite-) feat, screw-feat, 
cat-feat, valiant-champion's whirhng-feat, barbed spear, quick 
strotte, mad roar, heroes' fury, wheel-feat, sword-edge-feat, climb- 
ing against spÍke-pointed things {or places) and straightening his 
body on each of them. 



cotngabtus cruth ceiU o rodamnad a forcetul ce« 

eier chles íor analaib ocus ubullchles ocus sia- 
burcles ocus cles cúair ocus cles cait ocus derg 
Blliud erred nair ocus gai bolcai ocus bai brasi 5 
ocus bruth n-gene ocus sían curad ocus rothchles 
ocus fcéburchles ocus dreim fri fogaist ocus 
dlrgiúd cretti íor cach n-ái. 
[R.] Ní faigbistar fer and conmestar a *s ocus a ás 

ocus a anius. ^'^ 

a guth a gíés a chen/1. a anius a urlabra. 
a ág a gal a gaisced. a bruth a búaid a búadirse. 
a foraim a fómsige, a déni a tharpige 
a ííanchoscur co cles niíwbair ío Choinculaind 
comchosmail." 15 

31. "FÍr inna radi-siu, a hen," íor Conall Cernach, 
" tcét iUe in giUa clesach sin, co comairsem." " Nathó," 
for Cuculaind, "am scith aithbristi indiu, conda esur 
biád ocus co ro chotlur ni diwgÉ^ comlond," Ba fír 
ém do-som da«f ani sin, fo dagin iss ed láa and sin 20 
immanarnic do-Sí'm frisin Liath Macha hi taib Lindi 
Leith, hi Sleib Fúait. Roselaig Cuculaind chuci iar 
reliqua. Et ni fuigbí'j-/ar feur ant {sic) conmestar a. es ocus a 
fás a aines a airechu^ a urlabra a ceneol a guth a g^s a gal a 
%tí\%ced a bruth a buaidh a buaidhirsi a foraim a foimsige a deine 
a dianchosciií' no fescar co cles nonbuir for ChoincQ comcosmdiV. 
Eg ' o ro damnadh, H ; here // enumerates the feats like LU. 
^^ 3 fas ocus a ainius ocus a urlabra, H. 
'* a fiancosc, Z. ; a fianfescur, H. 

\ 31. Fior a ben for Conaltt {sic) ta^t iUe in gilte clessach sin 
i. Nato for Cucu. ansgith {sic) anossíe condEesar 
5 coro quodXs:!. Ba íTor dossam Aimo innfsin fo daigin 
nsin immcomhrainicc dosum frisin Liath Mocha; a txib 
Leith. Roselaith Cucu. cbuice co tarat a di laim immo 
o rotairrnchiU tir n-Eríní/fon n-ind;íj sin co torracA/ Índ 
n cona each rietse leis co teuch m-BricívWíi' inn Dun 

bíed oc 


'&aAzaige. Eg; , . . am scith i 
immaranic . . . corotaircelsat . . . co Dun Rud, H. 
" naidi, L. '* digó, LU. 



Oí a line that is long descended, he speaketh with 

grace and with order ; 
A brave and a valiant hero, like a íury he lights in the 

Dexterous of aim and so agile, and quiclc and sure at 

the hunting ; 
And lind ye a man among men folk, a mould that may 

match with Cuchulainn ! " 

31. " Sooth, lady," quoth Conall the Victorious, 
" let that famous fellow {lii. gillie of feats) come 
here that we may inquire of him." " No," quoth 
Cuchulainn. " I am to-day weary and done up. I 
wiU not hold a duel till after I have had food and 
sleep." In sooth that was really so, inasmuch as it 
was the day on which he had fallen in with [his steed] 
the Grey of Macha by the side of the Grey Linn at 
Sliav Fuait. On its having come out oí the loch, 
Cuchulainn crept up ío it and put his two hands 
around the steed's neck till they twain got a-wrest- 
ling, and on that wise they made a circuit oí Erin, 
until on that night Cuchulainn came chasing with 
his steed {lit. driving horse) to Emain. He got 
the 61ack Sainglenn in like wise from Lough Dubh 

§ 32. It was then Cuchulainn spake thus : " To-day 
have the Grey and I visited the great plains oí Erin, 
namely, Bregia of Meafh, the seashore marsh of 


tichtain dó asind loch, co tarat a di laim irama brágit, 
co ragaib etorro oc gleic, co rothairmchellsat tír 
n-Erend fon n-innasin, co toracht inn aidchi si'n cona 
eoch riata leis co Emain Macha. Is íón n-Ínnas cetna 
dano fuair in Dub Sainglend a Loch Duib Saingl<?Wí/. 5 

32. Is and asbert Cuculaind ani seo : " Rosirius 
indiu ocus in Liath morbrugi Erend i, Brega Midi 
Muresc Murthemni Macha Mag Medba, Currech 
Cleitech Cema, Lia Line Locharna, Fea Femen 
Fergna, Urros Domnand Ros Roigne, A«ni (? Aleo fí) 10 
Eó, Ferr cacA cless cotlud, diliu lim longud oldás 
cach ni. Tongu do dia toinges mo thúath, diam-sa 
saithech bíd ocus cotulta, conid cles ocus cluchi lim 
comrac fri óenfer." [Maith tra, ar Conchobar, is lor 
atáthai : agairimtell Bricrend, tucthar biad ocus hnd 15 
bodesta ocus coiscter ind imforran cotair an fleid. 
Dognither samlaid ba saim doib iarsuidiu co cend tri 
la ocus teora n-aidchi.] 

§ 32. ... Lochama Fea 7 Fem. 7 Fei^ina Corann 7 Umall 
7 Um*! Cera . . . Turida . . . Tailtiu . . . Ros 7 Roisgne ... 7 Aleo 
Toig do dia ...,//. 

§ 32. Issand ismb^rt Cucu. indso : 

Rosirius andiu morbruighe Erend for se i. Breugha Midiu Mu- 
rescc Míw-temne Machfe Mag Medba Curteúi Cleitech Cerax 
Aidne Aigli Asal Lia Linde Lochrandfe Umall liii/s. Cera Míen- 
mag MuccraÍme Tenmag TuJchffi Tuiride Tetba TlacA/ga Tailhi 
Temoir Cuala CermnEe Ros Ruidni Roiscne Aine. Ferr lem cech 
les guodXud dile lem longad olda cechni. Tongusíe itoingi mo 
tuath madam saitheuch bíd ocus coialiíe is cles lem ocus is cluichi 
dam comracc frie hoenfer. Maith tra ar Conc, is lor atáthai 
agairitndell Bric tucihar biedh issintech ocus coiscter ind imorran 
co taÍT an íleid. Dogniter * sanúaid ba saim doíb iarsuid/u co cend 
tri la ocus tri n-aidqi, Eg; is lor a fod atathai acair imdell Bric 
tuct biadh astech or se 7 coisctír in imforrain, L ; is lor itaithi 
Ícairimtell Br. tugt biadh ocus hnd b-esta . . . ind \raíors\n . . . 
Doroigned* . . ., //; Dericnet, L; co cend tri laa 7 teourai 
n-aidhce, L. Hete foUows in Eg: Toichim UW do Cruachain 
xi sis ans (v. § 42). 


Muirthemne Macha, Moy Medba, Currech Cleitech 
Cerna, Lia of Linn Locharn, Fea Femen Fergna, 
Urros Domnand, Ros Roigne (?...) E6. And to 
sleep and to eat it liketh me better than everything. 
By the god of my folk I swear 'twould be but fun 
and frolic for me to fight a duel had I my fiU of food 
and of sleep." [*"Well," quoth Bricriu, "this has 
lasted long enough. The Feast of Bricriu has to be 
celebrated ; let meat and drink (///. food and ale) be 
got at once, and let the women's warfare be put a 
stop to tiU the feast be over." This was done, and it 
was a pleasant (time) for them till the end of three 
days and three nights.] 

* After Eg and H^ which represent a different recension and 
pass on at once to § 42. 



33. Immacomarnic tra dóib débaid do denara im- 
maM curadmir doridisi. Dognl Concobur ocus mathi 
UWol chena a n-etrain, co roglethe a m-brethugud. 
" Eircid " íor Concobwr " cussin íer f oHmathar íor 
n-etrain, co Coinroí míjc n-DairÍ." Conid and asbírt : 5 

[R.] "Ahd in fer concerta do chách 
míic Dairi duír csmroth Curof 
conclecht iir fiJrcoll nad fri góe gebithar 
fer find fíren fer maith mortnfnwnach 
brugaid ar brugachus 10 

lcéch ar laimthenchus 
ardri ar airechus 
concertfa fír foraib feidm airg ailfes." 



34. "Foemaim-sea sin tra" for Cuculaind. "Cet 15 
lem dawíi" for 'Loegaire. "A dula da«o" for Conall 
CernacA. "Gabtair tra eich duin," for Cuculaind, 
"ocus indilltiV dp charpat a Chonaill." "Aill amai" 
íor Conall, "Eche" for Cuchulaind "foritíV cach 
amglicu t'echrad-su utmailli do cheim ocus t'innell 20 
imtrommu con cingenn do charpat, con tocba clod 
cechtar a da roth rocharpait, con[id] slicht suachnid 

§ 33-41 in Eg,foL 23'' comes after the words : Anaid or Sencha 
denaid mo riar-s;e. Dodenam ol siat {end of § 74), i.e. after the 
visit to Curoi. H agrees with Eg as to order. 

§ 33. For the words "Immacomamic/omacn-Dairi"£'jreads: 
Isi mo riar-sa or Sencha uair nach lamtar \iur m-brfMugií5innach 
baile oile, eirgid co Conri moc n-Daire isse rot lemathar hur m- 
hTeiAugud ar bur n-agaidh. Conad ann asp^rt S^nca. Isi mo 
riarsa daíb em . , . uaír natrA fetnr breataug»i/ Ínnaf;^ baile aili . . . 
ro lemat far mbreathugui/ i far ■nagaiii . . . conceri do cach Curu 
aiac Daire conclecht fir forgoll nat fri goe gebithsi, //. 

§ 34. Ffemaim fsmaim ar Cu. A du! ar Con. Cet lem ar L. 
Gaibtfr teich d'iiíiu a Chon. ar Cu. ocus innilltír do carpa/. Cid 
amai for Con. Éché for Cu. forfitír cach aimglica techrarfa ut- 
maiUe hindill. imtruime concingenn do carpa/ con togbann clad 
cei:^^ a da rotb do rocarpniV conid slii^^^ suaichnid frí hed oll 
bliaii^ do ogaib Ula^^cech rot riadwj' do carpiitsa a CoQaill. Eg: 

' Curui mac Dáire lom. dúir and CEemroih) Eg: 

' conclecí/ai fir forgall nat fri goi gebithar, Eg; nat, //"and 
L; mad, Ll/; gebitar, L(/. '' mormeanmnach, E^. 

i* concertfa fir foraib feidm airg ailfes. Ail-, £g. airg ailfes 
alid. al-, Lí/, ^ mailli, L U. " imtruma concingend, //] con 
toghba clodh, H. ^ con slicht, LU. 



§ 33- Again it was their hap to quarrel about the 
Champion's Portion. Conchobar with the iiobles of 
Ulster interposed with the view of settling upon the 
adjudication of the heroes. "Go to Curoi mac Dairi, Curol is 
the man who wiU undertake to intervene," quoth ^pjjg 
Conchobar. It was then he spake ; — 

" Entreat ye of him the hardy ; in the rede which he 

dealeth for all men 
Curoí mac Dairi surpasseth ; and true the judgment 

he giveth. 
He is fair, not given ío falsehood, but good and a 

lover of justice, 
Noble in mind and a guest-friend, skilful of hand like 

a hero, 
And like to a high king in leading; he will adjudge 

ye truly. 
To ask him demandeth courage." 


§ 34. "I accept that then," quoth Cuchulainn, "I 
agree (///. I allow Ít) then," quoth Loigaire. " Let us 
go then," quoth Conall the Victorious. "Let horses 
be brought us and thy chariot yoked, O Conall," 
quoth Cuchulainn. " Woe is me ! " cried Conall. 



fri ed m-bliadwíi do ocbaid UW cach rot rfadas do 

charpat-su a Chonaill." 

35- "Atcluni-siu siít a LoegdíW" for Conall, "Fe 

am^ " for Loegaire, nachamatl nachamimderg ; 

" Am escid-sea for atha for ilatha 5 

co ucht aníaid irgaile re n-ocaib Ulad. 
Ni chuir form-sa remthus rerig 
con clechtaim-se cairpteoracht 
re n-arcaib ré n-erredaib ri oencairptib 
i n-dolgib i n-drobelaib hi cailtib hi cocrichaib lo 
nad clechta err óencharpait do imluad ar mési," 

36. La sodain roinled a charpat do Loegfl/W«, 
ocus ro leblaing ind, ocus imreid dar Mag Dá gabul, 
dar BííTiaÍd na Forairi, dar Ath Carpait Fe/gusa, dar 15 
Ath na Mórrfgna do Chserthiund Clúana Da Dam hi 
Clithar Fidbaidi hi Comraur CetharsUged sech Dun 
Delca dar Mag Slicech siar hi Siéib Breg. Ro gab 
tromcheó doborda dorcha doeolais dó and sin, con- 
narb inríata dó in chonar. " Anam sund," for Loegaire 20 
fria araid, " co ro diglá in ceó dind." Tairbling 
LoegajVí asa charput, ro chuir in gilla na eocho hi 
fergort bói hi comfocus dó. 

37. A m-bói and in gilla, co n-acca in scáilfer 
mór ina doch«m. NÍr bo segunda a tuarascbáil ; se 25 

§ 35. Feama for L. nacham ail nacham imdiTg a Con. for Cu. 
Am esccíd-sa. for atha for ilatha co hacAí n-irgaile re n-ogaib UW 
ni chuir formsa rerathus re rig concJechtaimsi cairpteoraíAí re 
hargaib re herrfrfaibh re héncair^tib indoilgib ind drobelaib a 
coiUtÍb a coiccríchaíí nat cleirA/a err ícncarpai/ do imluadh ar 
meissi. Amesc Eg. 

§ 36. Lasoáain rogabai'/ a eich do L. ocus ro hinnlíi^a carpaí 
ocus do reblaing ind. Brci'^íais (brethais, /í) intarad brot forsan 
n-echroj'rf ag toigetA/ amach for ceí oir co tangatar dar Mag Da 
gabal fri Ulltu dar Berrna/ií na Foruire dar Aih Caipai/ Fergusa 
lar Ath na Morrigna do Caortaíjn Cluana Da dam a Clilhíír 
Fidbaííl'e a Com«r Ceitrisligte dar Sligtib Duine Delga dar Mag 
SligícA siar a Sliab m-Breg; m-blathsolus. Is ann sin attracht 
duibnell trom tiug doborda X/f^- ^4 '■) duibchiach dorcha doeolois 
for L. Is ann ismtMM som fria araid don rind sis an carpa/ for se 
ocus (jif) scuir na hechu co rodigla in ceo do« fainiV. DognithCT' 
samlaid. Ro cuir in gilli na heocha isin fergort bae i comfocuss 
do ocus ro gab ga foruiri ocus ga forcoimet iarsin. E^. 

§ 37. Ni cian bui and conacca in scal mor chuicce ina dochom 
ise mullaíAleathíiB belremor bolcsuiIfirA granna grindéCanach 

"Every one," quoth Cuchulainn, "knows well the 
clumsiness of thy horses and the unsteadiness of thy 
going and of thy turnout ; thy chariot's movement 
is most heavy ; each of the two wheels raiseth turf 
every way thy big chariot careers, so that for the space 
of a year there is a well-marked track easily recog- 
nised by the warriors of Ulster." 

% 35. " Dost thou hear that, Loigaire ? " said Conall, 
"Woe is me," quoth Loigaire. "But I am not to 
blame or to reproach. I am nimble at crossing fords, 
and more, to breast the storm of spears, outstrip- 
ping the warriors of Ulster. Put not on me the pre- 
cedence of kings till I practise íaring beíore kings 
and champions against single chariots in strait and 
diE&cuIt places, Ín woods and on confines, till the 
champion oí a single chariot essay not to career 
before me." 

§ 36. Thereupon Loigaire had his chariot yoked 
and he leapt therein, He drove over the Plain-of- 
the-Two-Forks, over the Gap-of-the-Watch, over the 
Ford of Carpaí Fergus, over the Ford-of-the-M6rrigan 
to the Rowan Meadow of the Two Oxen in the Fews 
of Armagh (Clithar Fidbaidi), by the Meeting of the 
Four Ways past Dundalfc, across Mag Shcech, west- 
wards to the slope of Bregia. A dim, dark, heavy 
mist overtook him, confusing him in such wise that 
it was impossible for him to fare farther on the way. 


inullachlethan belremur bolcsuilech, gríwdetenach 
granna grwcánach, dosmailgech docraid adetig, sé 
tailc talchar tiwsewsach, sé sotal sucach séitfidach, sé 
rengraar rigtrén rochalma,sé borb brogda bachlachda, 
Msldub demsidi fair, arit odor immi, inar co foph a 5 
thona im sodain, se«brisca asalcha má chossa. Mátan 
maglorci móri fria ais ama/ mol mulind. 

38. Cóich et na heich se a gilli ? " for se la fegad co 
andíaraid fair. " Eich L.oegairi Bu^áai^" for in 
gilfa. "Fír" for se "maith in fer asa eich," Is am- 10 
lajd ro raid sin la tarcbail a máta;V/ fair ocus dobretha 
gniganach adetig dur dosmaílgech, Ba duibithz'r gual cech n-alt 
ocus ceíA n-aige de o mullaí-í co talmoin.' Ba sama/ta fri herball 
fiadeich in mong gEeÍsitech gre liath consuigh- tar a fomiDa siar 
sei^iítair. Suile duibliatha lindach^ lais. Pa meitigthi'r clar 
fidiiUe cech det glasbuide bai an egar a da drant. Ba sama/ta 
co rachnrf long forlan seolarA dar a chra;s gin osluicthe. Sron 
cham cuassoi^A lais, medon brec ingal- aicci. Nosceirt fidte 
salonnmeich do thulaib a lurgan b-fiar b-focamm. Oircne mel- 
lacha grebancha lais. Sliasta sacacha sithcamma aicce se 
adbronuach lethontsluaistech se glunmár toncoir glasmgnech. 
Ba heccíT/Ia ecsama/V an Ur sin. Ba dub teimnige ba brogda 
bachlachda ba fuachda forgranda ba hanuairc aníebda tuarujcbiii'/ 
ind fir sin. Is e ba mo d'frroib domííj« cona matan matluirge 
fadb-e (fadbuidhe, //) draigin droch denmoige co forcraid for 
deghláo a duirn do firie glend a da gualann. Araile áráit 
músccaide breclaíAína uimbe cona himlib iamfeidib si imtromm 
frimtec-í/ aduar fri hanad eitig fri hairechtus aithe asnbroit ca 
hároiti sin ro búi imon m-bachlach. £f. fri himttícA/ (st'c), ML. 
§ 38. larsin iarfoidis in t-aithíí-A do arad Lasgum B. can dd 
no cuich a tigfrna. Nl or an t-aru L. B. mac Conn. mai'c lliach 
mo tig^masa. Is gilla daigfir <5n ar an scál ocus is z.'a\\aid atbfrt 
anaisin ocus ro togaib a matán matluirge ocus dobrf/A beim do o 
cluais co caraid. Cnetaig* {sic) ocus iachta/j in t-araid lasodmn. 

' grenetnach, LU. '^ o mull. co bond, H. 

'* consuighedh, H. " bui neehtar a da draint, H. 

'■ Ba medigith/r clar fithcillie cech ded glasbuide boi a cechtai 
adi drant ; ba sama/ta co racharflong fo a lan seol tar a gin-craois 
foslaicti ; srón quam cuasanuch leis Uthiwzh brec ingaluir aicci ; 
nííícerd f-i salannmeich do Culuib a lurg. bflar bfoquam, L; cí. 
LL iii\ '^ folan, H. 

** cona madán magluircie fadbuidi dr<in denmaide co íorcmaid 
tor delgan do fri aglend (agl?) a dhi ghual. Z. = frÍ aidleind a 
gualancC LL 64' 19 ; v. A^Z. xxx. 109. 

" can do 7 cuich a tigerna, i^iarfaigis . . . can do chuich do 
tigema, //, ^ magluirci . . . dobreth, H. 

* cnetais 7 iachtais 7 eghmis an giUe iar facvail an moir-imnid 
7 an eccoml. Fe ámae, ar Laegairi ac cloisdin (act an arad. 
Lasodaí'« atracht, Z=cned in gilla ocus iachta ocus eighidh ic 
facbai? in morimnidh ocua Índ ecomlainn. Fe amae for Laeg. ic 
doistin iachta. ind aradh, Lasodain atracht, H. 



" Let us stay here," quoth Loigaire to his charioteer, 
" until the mist clear up," Loigaire ahghted írom his 
chariot, and his gillie put the horses into the meadow 
that was near at hand. 

§ 37- While there, the gillie saw a huge giant 
approaching him. Not beautiful his appearance : 
broad (of shoulder) and fat of mouth, with sack eyes 
and a bristly face ; ugly, wrinkled, with bushy eye- 
brows ; hideous and horrible and strong ; stubborn, 
violent and haughty; íat and pufíing; with big sinews 
and strong forearm, bold and audacious and uncouth, 
A shorn black patch of hair on him, a dun covering 
about him, a tunic over it to the ball of his rump ; on 
his feet old tattered brogues, on his back a ponderous 
club like unto the wheel-shaft of a mill. 

§ 38. " Whose horses are these, giUie ? " he asked, 
as he gazed furiousIy at him. "The horses of Loi- 
gaire the Triumphaní." "Yesl a fine fellow he !" 
And as he thus spake he brought down his club on 
the gillie and gave him a blow from top to toe. 
The giUie gave a cry, whereupon Loigaire came up. 
"What is this you are doing to the ladF" asked 
Loigaire. "'Tis by way of penalty for damage to 
the meadow," quoth the giant. " I will come myself 
then/' quoth Logaire. They struggle together. . . . 
Loigaire anon fled tÍU he reached Emain, after having 
left his horses and gillie and arms. 

to a 
was a 

Of the 

and liow 


3 'm gilla. 1 

in eillu ?" ^ 


béim dón gillu o adbrond co hó. Egis 
Doroich Loegaire fua. "Cid dia m-bá don gillu ? 
for Loegaire. "Hi cinta ind fergoirt do milliud" for 
in t-aithech . "[Is mé] féin ticfa " íor Loegaíre. 
Immacomsinitar dóib . . Techid Loegaíre iar tain, 5 
co ránic Emain Macha iar facbail a ech ocus a gilli 
ocus a armgascid. 

39. Nir bo chian iar tain, co toracht Conall Cer- 
noí/i in sligid cetna, co ránic in magin in ro artraig in 
ceo druidechta do Loegm'ríu. Artraigid dawo in dubnel 10 
cetna dorcha doborda íor Conall Cernac/i, connar cun- 
gain nem na talmain. Tarbhngis Conall iar tain, ocus 
scurid in gilla na eochu isind fergort chétna. Nir bo 
chian dó iar sudi, co faca in scál cétnachuci. larfaigis 
dó, cia dia m-bo cheli. "Am ceh-sea Conaill Címaig " 15 
for se. " Maith in fer," for in scál la tócbáil a lámi, co 
farat beim dó ó hó có a fodbrond. íachtais in giHa. 
TÍc Conall ío sodain, Immacomarnaic dó ocus don 
scál. Tresi cluchi ind athig. Techis Conall ón mud 
chetna amn/ ro theich LoegaiVí iar fácbail a armgascid 20 
ocus a ara ocus a ech, co ránic Emain Machai, 

40, Dolluid Cuculaind-iar sin forsin t-sligid chetna, 
co ránic in n-inad cétna, conostarraid Ín dubcheó 
cétna, feib tarraid in lucht remi. Tarblingis Cucu- 
AttiacAI ío celo'ir Ínti L. cona armgaisccí'rf do foirithin annarai/, 

icus don scaí cii roibe ba de sodam do L. Togb, 
a malán matluirgi ocus dobrí/í beim do o cluais co cara/rf 
ict a airm n-uad (si'c) gan comus. Teichis L. iarsin fo mela 
ocus fo mebaí/ co nacAi Emoin M, iar b-fagbín7 a ech ocus a arad 
ocus armgaiscja'. £f . '" for om. L U. 

§ 39, Nir bo cian iarsin co úaichl Con. C. iarsin sligirf ocus 
gusan maigin a tuarcoib in dubceo druÍgecA/a for L. roime, Ar- 
traiges in ceo cí/nai for Chon. conar cumaing nem na ialmoin do 
faicsin, Tuirlinges iarsin ocus taimiir in carpn/ ocus cuirís in 
t-ara na hechu issin b-fergort c^/na feib roscuirit eich L. Nir bo 
cian doD araid conaca Ín fer cí/na chuige occus {sic) iarfar/l/ do 
cia occa m-bissi ol se. Ac Conall C. mac Aimírgin {sic) ar an i-ara. 
Maith in fer ol in scal la togbui/ in matain m. I. ro boi ina laim 
ocus la tahairt Í^eimen do corroiafA/ in t-arii, Atcluin Con. ocus 
eirges fo cf/oir ocus immacomaimice [dó] ocus don scal. Ni ba ferr 
son do« foniaisiigthírCon. feib roforuaisliged L.ocus teich/i/coriacht 
Emoin Machíe iar b-fagbai/ a ech ocus a arm ocus íiad. Eg. 
§ 40. Doluid ifli ina carpa/ Cu, iamiamarf ocus iar slemoin- 

!' and ^ a madain magluirci, L; in 1 

" and ^* beme, H. 

1 co torracht . . , isin sli-chetna, /ij 

"" artraigis, H, L. ^ connar congain 

" acambisi, H; ciagam boise ale, L. * 

in maghdraighin 
torracht, L. 



§ 39. Not long thereafter Conall the Victorious 
tooli the same way and arrived at the plain where the 
druidical* mist overtoolt Loigaire. The IÍke hideous 
black, dark cloud overtook Conall the Victorious, so 
that he was unable to see either heaven or earth. 
Conall thereon leapt out and the gillie unharnessed 
the horses in the same meadow, Not long there- 
after he saw the same giant [coming] towards him. 
He asked him whose servant he was. " I am servant 
to Conall the Victorious," he quoth. "A good man 
he," quoth the giant, as he raised his hands till 
they gave a blow to the gillie from top to toe. The 
fellow yelled. Anon came Conall. He and the giant 
got to close quarters. Stronger were the wrestling 
turns of the giant. Conall fled, as Loigaire had done, 
having left behind his charioteer and his horses and 
came to Emain. 

40. Cuchulainn then went by the same way till he 
came to the same stead, The like dark mist overtook 
him as fell upon the twain preceding. Cuchulainn 
sprang down, and Laig brought the horses Ínto the 
meadow. He had not long to wait till he saw the 
same man coming towards him, The giant asked 
him whose servant he was, "Servant (companion) 
to Cuchulainn," "A good man he," quoth the giant, 
plying him with the club. Laig yelled. Anon Cuchu- 
lainn arrived. He and the giant came to close 



laind ocus berid L^g na eocho sin fergort. Nir bo 
chian dó, co n-acca in íer cetna chuci, ocus imma- 
íoacht de, coich dia m-bo cheH. "Celi do Choincii- 
laind" for se, " Maith in fer" for in scal la furmed in 
mátaí'« íair. lachtais LíÉg. Tic Cuculaind fo sodain, | 
ocus immácomarnaic dó ocus don scál, ocus nostuar- 
cend cách araiH d(b. Traitar in scál, co rodiisig na 
eocho ocus in n-araid, ocus co ruc eocho ocus aradu 
ocus armgaisced a coceli leis, co ránic Kmain Machíi 
cona morchoscur, ocus dorat dia fíadnaib fein fat. 

41. " Is Íet-su in curadmír" ol Bricri fri Coincu- 
laind. " Is follus as for n-gnimaib ni dligthi comar- 
dad fris eUr." "Ni bá ffr ani sin a Bricriu," for siat, 
" úair fuí-etaramar-ni, conid *n di chardib sidchai- 
rechta dosfanic do immirt mela ocus camachta forni : 
immon curadmir, ocus ni léicfem-ni uaind hé air sin." 
Femdit tra UWí/ ocus Concob«r ocus Fer^s a 
n-etírgleod, rocwrtis no dosaichthin Conroí xoatc Dairi 
nú do saicht[h]in Ailella ocus Medba co Cruachain Ai. 
chirai^ a fuilt iarsin t-slighi'i^ ce/aa. do eit^leod a imrisnfe ocus 
an eiT aile Ímmon cuT conas tarf in diibceo druigííí/a cíftia feib 
tarf in lucht c^ína co rolin in coibeis n-dimain tarf eUr nem ocus 
talmoi'íi. Tairlingis Cucu. isin maigin cí/na ocus cuires L:eg na 
hechu isin u-férgurl. Ni ba cian hx\ ann conacEe an fer cendgarb 
corpremorchuicceconamadan matluirgí inalaimamit/tigedroime. 
CÍe thusa a gille for se co haniarraid. Ni me fuil gan tigerna ar 
Laog i. Cu. mc Sub. Maith cach on ar [in] scal ocus togbaid 
fair in mathan m. 1. ocus dobríM beim dó o chluais co charo/i/. 
Garthis Laeg. Atetbai Cu. a gaiscíií ocus fochírd cor n-iach 
Tí-eTTíd de dochum in ocus do foirithin Laoich. Dfrcais 
cach a cele dib, ba feig iíTi ocus ba forgranda in íeghad oi 

fritbal- dobíTt cach for 
immacomtuairg doib oci: 
beim dosum i. tathbeim 
a bruth ocus a brig an ° 
ocus co rug Cu. eochw o 
fon qma ( = cuma) ■ 

ceile dib i. Cu. ocus in scal. Ocus 
áohered Cu. da beim im cech n-íen 
us beim co cumtis co roforuaislig Cu. 
.Íl co rodilsig na hechu ocus an arairf 
s aTadae in lochta aile i, Con. ocus L. 
Dolluid Cu. do Emoin indiaig Ín lochtai 

s dobríM a n-eochií ocus a n-ariirfíe doib. £ff. 
§ 41. Is latsa in zmadmir a Cu. ar Bricri. Ni ba fior sin ar 
Con. ocus Laegairi oir ni fetamor cia do chairdib side Conculaind 
dot fainiV do imbírt a comachta foirn . . . cert Ín cuF uaind. O ro 
feimdit UliTíí/ an bur n-eitírgleod innsoighiií co Conroi mac Daire 
fbr Scncha. Anaidh la breith n-aile coristai uair leraaid bur 
m-brethugwi/ in bur b-fiadhnuse. Eg. 

" Bricni, LU. 
*' do eterg-lt 

'-U. '* Cruchain, Z6'. 

d uW, Z; do eierdeligfaud a 
ulo^, N. " Ín duibnel, //. 

dimaine, fJ. "^ 7 scuris, fi. ^ nir bo cian bui and 

•A in fer mor cendgharbh corpreamhar chuici cona mata« 
iluirce ina laim ama/ t/ced roime. — End of Jragment in H, 



quarters and either pounded the other. Thegiant got 
worsted. He forfeited horses and charioteer, and 
Cuchulainn brought along with him his fellows' 
horses, charioteers and accoutrements, till he reached 
Emain in triumph, He gave them to their rightful 

§ 41. "Thine is the Champion's Portion," quoth 
Bricriu to Cuchulainn. " Well I wot from your deeds 
ye are not a whit on a par with Cuchulainn." " Not 
true, Bricriu," quoth they, "for we know it is one 
of his íriends from Faery that came to him to play 
us mischieí and deal with us perforce as to the 
championship. We shall not forego our claim on 
that account." The men of Ulster, with Conchobar 
and Fergus, failed to effect a settlement. They sent 
them* either to go to* Curoi mac Dairi, or* else to 
go to Cruachan, to AiliH and to Méve. 

* The scribe of LU was harmonisÍDg t 

s not sure which to follow. 


eiant i3 






the 80V- 



Tochim Ulad co Cruachain in so. 

42, [Doronsat iarom Ulaid comarli a hoeninud im 
comuaiU ocus im chomdimmus in trír curad sin, ocus 
isi comarli doronsat mathi \]]aíí im Conchobwf do 
techt leo d'ete^gleod a cesta co tech n-Ailella maic 
Mágach ocus Medbi co Crúachnaib ÁÍj immá curad- 5 
mír ocus im imarbáig na m-ban. Bá cáin ocus ba 
háibind ocus bá socraid arréim ronucset Vlaid do 
CruachnaÍb. Anais im?norro Cuculaind coUéic do 
éis in t-slóig oc airfitiud ban a-\J\ad, i. néi n-úbla clis 
ocus nái cletíne cUs ocus nói scena clis, ocus ní thair- lo 
mescad nach ai alaile. 

43. Luid Lóeg mcic Rfangabm iarom a ara-sora 
Conculaind dla acallaim-som bale irrabe oc na cles- 
saib, co n-epírt fris : "A cláin trúaig," or se, "roscaíg 
do gal ocus do gaisced, dochuáid uait in curathmír, 15 
rosíachtatar Ulaíí/Crúachain o chfanaib." " Nír rath- 
aigsem eter ém, a Láig ; ÍndiU dún in carp^í' trá " or 
se, Indlis Lóeg iarom in cdX'pai, ocus lotár íor érim. 
Rosfachtatar trá slóig \J\ad archena in tan sin Mag 
ra-Breg. Robói di lúas ind érma ronuc Cuculaind 20 
trá ó Dún Rudraige iarná grisad dond araid tucht 

§42. £"^here varies {/0/. 2i'>) : Dia tri la ocus teora n-aidchi 
ierom dollotor Ulo/'rf uile a m-breithemnus n-PiWella mc Magach 
eo Cruachnaib eeí imman curadmir ocus im itnmarbaid na m-ban. 
Pa chffim ocus ba hsibind ocus ba {/ol. ii^ :) sochraidh in réim. 
H agrees Ín the opening with Eg: imbreith . . . ba cain . . . 
halainn . . . arem . . . cletine. * di eíss, Eg. 

'" noi cleitin clis, Eg; nach ae arailei diph, Eg. 

" Choncij, Eg. '■* die agallam bail aroibe agan chlis, 

Egj- conderbhairt, M. '* A claenain truaigh, Eg; a claon a 

tniaigh, H ; ro scaith, Eg. '" \J\aid Cruachnaib Ín tan so, Eg. 

" Ni ro rataiges etir allEeiíc indill duin, Eg; Cruachna in trasa. 
ni rathaiges, H. " tra om., Eg. \J\ad Mag m-Breg in tan sin, Eg. 
^ ronucc Cucu. o Dun R., Eg. ^ grissurf, Eg. imrulaid in 

Lieth Macha;, Eg. 



§ 42. * [Thus to the one stead the men of Ulster 
assembled in council concerning the heroes. The 
three alike haughty and overweening. The con- 
clusion the Ulster nobles in Conchobar's following 
arrived at was, to accompany the heroes and have the 
difíiculty adjudged at the abode of AiliU mac Magach 
and of Mí;ve of Cruachan Ai] with reference to the 
Champion's Portion and the mutual rivalry oí the 
women. Fine and loveIy and raajestic the march 
of the Ultonians fo Cruachan, Cuchulainn, however, 
remained behind the host entertaining the Ulster 
ladies, [performing] nine feats with apples, nine with 
javelins and nine wifh knives, in such wise that one 
did not interfere with the other. 

§ 43. Loig mac Riangabra then went to speafc His 
with him to the feat-stead and said : "You sorry chario- 
simpleton (squinter ?), your valour and bravery have tannts 
passed away, the Champion's Portion has gone from Cuchn- 
ye; the Ultonians have reached Cruachan longsince." *^^"'' 
" Forsooth we have not at all perceived it, my Loig. 
Yoke us the chariot then," quoth Cuchulainn. Loig 
accordingly yoked it and off they started on fheir 
march. By that time the Ulstermen had reached 
Magh Breg. Cuchulainn having been incited by his 
chariofeer, marched with such speed from Dun Rud- 
raige, the Grey of Macha and the Black Sainglenn 

* For the section in square bractets read ; Then after three 
day5 and three nights the Uhonians as a body went to be adjudged 
to Aihli mac Magach to Cruachan Ai. — Eg and H, where this 
comes al once after § 32 and represenls a different ri 



imruiáith in Lfath Macha ocus Ín Dub Sainglend fón 
charput dar fot chóicid Concob«i> ocus tar Slfab 
Fualt ocus dar Mag m-Breg, conid hé in tres carpa/ 
cetna ránic Cruachna Ai. 

44. Lasa réim ocus lasa m-borrfad tra ronucsat 5 
láith gaile fer n-\J\ad uli im Chonchoóur ocus imón 
rigraid ol chen^e do Chrúachnaib Ái, rolá armgrith 
mór di Cruachwaií, co torchratar na hairm asna 
fraigthib, corrabatár for \3\main, ocus rosgab sluágu 

in dúne ule, conid samlaid rombói cach óenduine 10 
isind Us araa/ bís curcas fri sruth. Asb^rt Medb ta 
soúain: " Cosindiu dawíí," ol si, "ó gabusa Crúachna, 
ní chúala-sa in toraind cew na níulu and cosindossa." 
Luid FindabaiV ia sodain ingen AileUa ocus Medía 
co m-bói isin n-grfanan for fordorus in dúne, co 15 
n-érbairt: "Atchíu-sa cairptech issammag a máthar- 
nait" ol si. "Cuir a samla fair," ol Medb, "a criith a 
écosc a chongraira, delb a iir, dath a ech, tochim a 

45. "Atchíu-sa ém" ol Findabair "na dá ech filet 20 
fón charpwí dá ech bruthmara brecglassa comdatha 
comchrótha coramathi combúada comlúatha com- 
léimnecha biruich ardchind agewmáir allmair gablaich 
guipchúil dúalaich tullethain forbreca fosenga for- 
lethna forráncha cassmongaig casschairchig, Carpat 25 
fidgrind íéthaidi, da n-droch duba tairchisi, dá n-all 

' conid se, E^: Cruachna Aoi, E^: 
° lasa reim ocus lassan m-borrfad, Eg: 
" uli om., Eg. ' do Ctuachnaib Eei, Eg. " rosg-ab crith Auag 
an diinaid uile amo/ bis curciw fri sruth, Eg. " Esmbert, Eg. 

'* odogabwsa, H. " ann anosa, H. '° Alchiussse carpa/ 

iasin mag, Egj cairptheirA, H. " Cuiri samlai, Eg; cuire, El/, 
but c/. g 49. " a chruth a ecosc, Eg. 

^ Atchiussai eim ol FindabiTíV na da euch failet fon carpat da 

euch bruthmaríe breucgiassa, Eg. " coradaths comcroda, Eg. 

^ combuada combuana comluatha, H. ^ aigenmair, Eg. 

** Bobcieil, Eg. ^ fosenga forra . . . casmongaig, Eg/ 

forranach, //. ™ feithendai, Eg. da nall naiU naipche nim- 

naisi, £g; fethandai . . . doirchisi, H. 



racing in such wise with his chariot across the 
whole province of Conchobar, across Sliav Fuait (the 
country around the Fews} and across the Plain 
of Bregia, that the third chariot arrived first in 

§ 44. In virtue then of the swiftness and the im- The 
petuous speed with which alí ihe vaHant Ultonians ?"*™ 
reached Cruachan under [the iead of] Conchobar chan. 
and the body of princes, a great shaliing seized 
Cruachan, tiíl the war-arms fell from the partitions 
to the ground, seizing lilcewise the entire host of 
the hold, till the men in the royai lceep were like 
unto rushes in a stream. Méve thereupon spatre : 
" Since the day I took up home in Cruachan I have 
not until now heard thunder, there being no clouds." 
Thereupon Findabair, daughter of AiIiII and of Méve, 
went to the soller over the high porch of the hold. 
" Mother dear," she said, " I see a chariot coming 
along the plain." "Describe Ít," quoth Méve, "its 
form, appearance and style ; the colour of the 
horses ; how the hero looks and how the chariot 

§ 45. " Truly, I see," quoth Findabair, " the two 
horses that are in the chariot. Two fiery dappled 
greys, alike in colour, shape and excellence, alike 
in speed and swiftness, prancing side by side. Ears 
pricked, head erect, oí high mettle and strangely 
bounding pace. Nostril fine, mane flowing, forehead 
broad, full dappled ; fuli slim of girth and broad of 
chest, manes and tails curled, they career along. A 
chariot of fine wood with wicker-work, having two 
biack revolving wheeis [and two beautiíul pliant 
reins.*] Its fertsi hard and straight as a sword, Its 
* Wrongly inserted, from a different n 



n-ífebda imnaissi, íertsi crúadi colgdirgi, cret nóitech 
nóiglinne, cuing druimnech dronargda, da n-all 
n-dúalcha dronbudi. Fer find íorchass foltlebor isin 
charpw/; folt dúalach tri n-dath fair, folt dond fri 
toind cind, croderg a medón, mind n-óir budi in folt i 
fordatuigithar. Rolásat tri imrothu imma chend 
cocairse cach aa dib hi táib alaile. Fúan cáin corcra 
n-imbi, cóicroth óir airgdide and. Scíath brec béim- 
nech, bil bán findruini. Gilech cúach cóicrind ar a 
durnd derglassid, Anblúth n-én n-ete zwgnáith uása : 
creit chsrpaií." 

46. " Atgénammár asa samail in fer sin " ol Medb. 
[R.] " Greit ríg senrechtaid buáda 

barc bodbae bruth brátha 

breó digla drech curad 1 

cúinsiu chórad cride n-dracon 

altfad m-brochbúada fordundibni 

in luchthond lámdérg hotgaire 

luth la fíbra foltchfp tond fri talmain tadbéim, 
Tongu-sa a tong mo thúath," ol Medb, " más co ; 
m-baraind debtha toth^t hoegaire Buzdac& cucund, 
amo/ bentair foltchíb fri lár talwnw co n-altain aith, 
bid sí sein ghcci ind air[s]lig dob^ra íoroná iín atám 

1 cret noithííA, £^. ' dró argait, Eg; dronairgit, /f. * fcr 
find forcas, Eg; find fisrchas . . . datha, H; findchass, LU. * fri 
toinn a chind croderc ar medon mind orbuide foll íor do tuideth-. 
Rollassat tri himsrethai, Eg; himsrotha, H. '^ cogoirsi, Eg. 

' corcra imbe coicroith oir aii^Íde (om. and) Eg; cain coir 
corcra, H. * se cuach coigrinn, Jig; sleg chuach, H ; durd, LCf; 
an bluth nen neitignaid uassa creit crai an carpaiV, Eg; n-eteg- 
náith,Z,í/. '" anbIáth,ZÍ/. " Atgenaraur assa ama^V ol 

Medb, Eg; atgenamar saml-an fir sin, H. " bruth brathu, Eg, 

'* cainsiu chorni^ cride rdraccant, Eg. " altfaid mbeithrech 
buada firrduintib, Eg; forduntibir, H. " 'm luch donn, Eg. 

" tartbeim, Eg; dond . . . tartbeim, H. 

^ a toing, Eg ; massa combaraind debthai, Eg; masa, M. 

^ amal tií»ar, Eg; folicip, H, 

^ bid EÍ sin glicce an airlig dober^ fomd lin atam i Cruach- 
fiaii mine foigligtir, Eg: 


body of wicker-work new and freshly polished, its 
curved yoke silver-mounted. Two rich yeIlow looped 
reins. In the chariot a íair man with long curling 
hair ; his tresses tri-coloured : brown at the skin, 
blood-red at the middle, as a diadem of yelIow gold 
the hair at the tips, Three halos encircle his up- 
turned head, each merging into the other. About 
him a soft crimson tunic, having five stripes of glitter- 
ing gold. A shield spotted and indented, with a 
bright edge of bronze. A barbed five-pronged javelin 
flames at his wrist. An awning of the rare plumage 
of birds over his chariot's írame." 

§ 46. "We recognise that man," quoth Méve, 
' from his description." 

" Compeer of kings, an old disposer of conquest, 

A fury of war, a fire of judgment, 

A flame of vengeance ; in mien a hero, 

In face a champion, in heart a dragon ; 

The long knife of proud victories which will hew us 

to pieces ; 
The all-noble, red-handed Loigaire ; 
His the vigour that cuts the Ieek with the sword- 

The back-stroke oí the wave to the land," 

" By the god oí my people," quoth Méve, " I swear 
if it be with íury of hostile feeling Loigaire the Tri- 
umphant comes to us, that Iike as leeks are cut tothe 
ground by a sharp kniíe, such will be the nicety of 



hi Cruachnaib Ai, rn«MÍ fochlithí/- a bruth ocus a 
br(g ocus a borrfad fó a réir fodein co tlathugud a 

47- "Atchíu-sa dano ciLvpat n-aile isa mag a mathar- 
nait," ol ind ingen, "ní mesu dothiét side." "Cuir a S 
samla fair" ol Medb, et reliqua. "Atchíu-sa ém," ol 
si "indala n-ech fil fon carp«/ gabur cenand crón- 
datha cruáid dían daigerda bedgach basiethan uchtle- 
than, bíras buille balcbúada tar áthu tar inbíru tar 
aittiu tar imratiu tar maige tar midglinni, co n-dasaid ^'^ 
iar m-buáid midise a samlaib én n-etarlúamain ; nis 
feid rao rosc rán intiu for arríad rochéim ráin étruth. 
Araile ech derg tauilethan drondúalach dúalchass 
drúimlethan foseng feochairfond íortrend fíírrgethach 
athechtai fath n-etarmaige eter mothru ocus amréthi, ^5 
Ní fogaib and imdoraid hi tír omna rlad roót. Carpat 
fidgrind fethaide, da n-droch finna umaidi, síthfe find 
forargit, cret aurard drésachtach, cuing druimnech 
dronuallach da n-all dúalcha dronbudi. Fer find íor- 
chass foltlebor isin charpw/. Drech lethderg lethgabur 2° 
laiss, fúamain find fuinechda, brat gorm crónchorcra. 
Scíath dond telbude, bil chonduáil crédumai, Luchair 

* Atchlusíe dna, F.g;; issin mag, Eg. 

* cuir a sam et reliqua, Eg; euire, LU. ^ indala hec, Eg. 

* daigerrda, Eg. " bailc, H. 

* indbfra tarraiti tar imraili, Eg; tarraitiu, H. 

" inidissi issamlaidh en etarluamuin ni feith mo rosc rao 
intiudh, Eg; indiut, LU ; mideise . . . ni feith, H. 

'* rain etruth, Eg; rám, LU; romreth, H. 

•* dúalchass om., Eg. 

'* fond fortren forrengach atetha ieth n-etarmoighe etir motra 
ocus aimreide, Eg; forrengach, H. 

" Íti'r omna riadrót, Eg. " dindroch, Eg; día n-droch, LU. 

" find argait, Eg. " dronordse danallt dualcba, Eg; 

drondualafA, H; dia n-all, LU; but cf. § 45, 50; finn forchas, 
Eg; find forcas, H; findcbass, LU. 

* lethde^g lelhgabor lais, Eg. 

" donn delbuide, Eg; faítecia, H. 

^ bii calot condualaib credumíe, Eg; daigerrda, Eg; bile, H. 



the slaughter he wiU inflict on us, whatever our nura- 
ber at Cruachan Ai, unless his glowing fury, wrath 
and high-dudgeon are guarded against and assuaged 
in accordance with his verv wish." 

§ 47. " Mother dear," quoth the daughter, " I see 
anon another chariot coming along the plain, not a 
whit inferior to the first," " Describe it," said Méve. 
"Sooth I see," she quoth, "in the chariot, on the 
one hand, a roan spirited steed, swiít, fiery and 
bounding, with broad hoof and expanded chest, taking 
strong vigorous strides across íords and estuaries, 
over obstacles and winding roads, scouring plains and 
vales, raging with triumph. Judge it from the like- 
nesses of soaring birds, among which my very quick 
eye gets lost from their most sraooth careering in 
emulous course. On the other a bay horse, with broad 
forehead, heavy locks and wavy tresses ; of light and 
long dashing pace ; of great strength ; fuli swiftly he 
courses the bounds of the plain, between stone en- 
closures and fastnesses. He finds no obstacle in the 
land of oaks, careering on the way. A chariot of fine 
wood with wicker-work, on two bright wheels of 
bronze ; its pole bright with silver mounting ; its 
frarae very high and crealcing, having a curved, firmly 
mounted yoke with two rich yellow looped reins. 
In the chariot a fair man with wavy hanging hair. 
His countenance white and red, his jerkin (fuamain) 
clean and white, his raantle {braí) of blue and 
crimson red. His shield {sciath) brown with yeIlow 
bosses, its edge veined with bronze. In his hand 
flames a fiery, furious spear, And an awning of 


derg daigerdíE ar a durn derglasaid. Anbluth n-én 
n-ete í«gnaith úasa creit chroncharpait." 

48. "Atgenamar asa samail in fer" ol Medb. 

[R.] " Oxad leomaiw londbruth loga lía cáin cermns 
cern etfr cethraib curethar cruáid 5 

chend ar chend glond ar glond gleó ar gléo. 
glé nodonselnf sládar iasc mbrec for ganini deirg 
dia ra-bi fergi fuásnadar m<íc Findchoimi frind. 
Tong a toing mo ihuaíh, amfl/ sladar iasc mbrec for 
Hcc derg áin co sústaib iarind, bid si sin mini na 10 
hesorgni dob/ra Conall Csrnach íorni, día fuasnaithfr 

49. " Atchiu-sa da«o carpi7/ n-aile Ísammag." " Cuir 
a samail duin," ol Medb, í/ reliqua. "Atchiu-sa ém" 

ol ind ingen [da ech commora comalii comchroda 15 
comluathu coraleimnecha biruich ardchind agenmair 
allmair gablaich gopchúil dúalaich tuUethain forbrecca 
fosenga íorlethna forráncha casmongaig casschair- 
chig] indala ech fil fón charpaí, ech líath lesslethan 
lond lúath lúaranach londmar lugleimnech lebor- 20 
mongach maignech toirnech trosraar tuágraong ard- 
chend uchtlethan lasaid fót fond bras fochuirse foc- 
ruáid fó a cruib calath cethardu dogréind aimai 
énlaithe lúith buáda, berid riuth for sét foscain úathu 
ech n-anailche, uiblech tened trichemruaid tatnit a 25 
cróes glomarchind. 

' anbluth n-eti n-eitignaid uassa creit croi an carpiiiV, Eg; an- 
bluth nen ned osa creii, H; n-etegnaith, L U. * Oxad leomuin, Eg. 

^ cuirethor cuf cend ar cend, Eg; crethaib, LL/. 

" gle no lansellne ni sladar iasc mbecc for gairb dfrg, Eg. 

'^ Aichiussffi donc carpaí n-aile ol an \ngen. Tabair a tuarusc- 
baíl ar Meii^. Atchfusa eim ar an 1. andala hech Itl fon carpn/, Eg. 

^ toirnech nwi., Eg; trostmar, Eg. 

^ dogrinn, Eg; dogrind, TE. 

^ luthbuada, Eg; lúthbiiada, TE. 

* eudhnanalchi uiblich tined trichemruaide taithnes a críes 
glomarchind fuil fo deisfertais in carpail, Eg. 



the rare plumage oí birds over the wiclcer frame of 
his chariot." 

§48. "We recognise the man írom his descrip- 
tion," quoth Méve. 

"A hon that groaneth, a flame of Lug, that dia- 
monds can pierce ; 

A wo!f among cattle ; battle on battle, 

Exploit on exploit, head upon head he heaps ; 

As a trout on red sandstone is cut 

Would the son of Findchoimi cut us ; should he 
rage against us, no peace ! 
" By my people's god, as a speckled íish ts cut upon 
a shining red stone with fiails of iron, such I swear 
will be the minuteness of the slaughter Conall the 
Victorious will execute on us should he rage against 

§ 49. " I see another chariot coming along the 
plain," "Give us its description," quoth Méve, 
"I see, in sooth," the daughter quoth, "two steeds, 
ahke for size and beauty, fierceness and speed, bound- 
Íng together, with ears pricked, head erect, spirited 
and powerful . . . with fine nostril, long tresses and 
broad foreheads, — fuU dappled, with girth full slim 
and chest eicpanded, mane and tail curled, dash- 
ing along. Yoked Ín the chariot, the one, a grey 
steed, with broad thighs, eager, swift and ffeet, — wildly 
impetuous, with long mane and broad haunches, 
thundering and trampling, — mane curled, head on 
high, breast broadly expanded. From out the hard 
course he liercel^ casts up clods of earth from his 
four hard hoofs, — a flock oí swift birds in pursuit. 
As he gallops on the way a 6ash of hot breath darts 
from him ; from his curbed jaws gleams a blast oí 
flame-red fire. 




50. Araile ech círdub cruaídchend cruind coelchos 
■t cálethan cobluth dfan [dúalmar]* duálach druimlethan 

dronchóchech maignech aignech bairrnech ballceim- 
nech balcbéiranech lebormongach casmongach scúa- 
plebor [drondualach, tullethan] grind iramaáig iar 5 
níth aigi ech in íath, rao scing srathu sréid sergi sétid 
maige raidglinne. [Ni fagaib and iradoraid hi tír 
omnáríad róot.] Carpat féthgrind fethaide, da n-droch 
ernbudi iarnda. Sithfe [find findairgit] co féthain 
findruine. Cret [urard drésachtach, sf] chréda 10 
chromglinne. Cuing druimnech dronordíe. Dá n-all 
dúalcha dronbudi. [Fertsi crúadi colgdírgi]. 

51. Fer bróinech dub Ísin charp/í/ as aldem di 
feraib h.'E.rend. Fuán cáin corcra cóir Ímbi. Heó 
óir int[é]Iaide uassa bán bruinnechur ina háthaurs- 15 
locud fris m-ben lúthu láth buUi. [Leni gelchulpatach 

co n-derginliud oir íorlasrach.] Ocht n-gemraa deirg 
dracondai for lár o da imlisen. Da n-gruád gormgela 
cróderca dofich uibhch tened ocus análaich. Fo- 

' coelcossach crualethon cobluth dian dualmar dniimlethaw 
dronchoichech bairnech balccheimnec scuablebor, E^. 
' dubnar Z.Í '., Fius., dulmar, Stokts. 
° aig, Egj sreidid, Eg. 

^ Caxpaí fidgrínd feithide dindroch lindíe umfeide. sithbe 
íind finnarccíii/ co fetanaib finndniine sicreda cromglÍDni, £g/ 
dia n-droch, Ll/. 

'^ dronbuide, Eg: " ia aiUdem, Eg; 

" coir corcra uimme, jE'^j* cóicdlabail, 7'E. /or c6\t. 
" intiaisi, /// ÍntlaÍs, E^. 

'^ lut a ianbuillc, £gy VII n-gema det^a, £gj- secht, TE. 
" a da imcaisin da n-gniaid n-gormgela, ££■; for lár cechtar 
a dimcaisen, T£. 

"> aiblech ocus analaich, Eg; Here TE adds as follows : 
Do fich ruithen serci ina dreich. Atá lim ba fras do nemannaib 
ro laad ina chend. Dubithir leth dubfolach cechlar n-ai a da 
brúad. Claidíí orduirnd i n-ecrus sesta for a dib áliastaib. Gai 
gormrúad glac thomsidi !a faga féig fobartach for crannaib i 



§ 50. " The other horse, dark-grey, head íirmly knit, 
corapact, fleet, broad-hoofed and slender. Firm, 
swift, and of high raettle, with curl and plait and tress, 
— broad of back and sure of foot, lusty, spirited and 
fiery, he liercely bounds and fiercely strides the 
ground. Mane and tail long and flying, heavy locks 
adown his forehead broad. Grandly he careers 
the country after winning the horse-race, Soon he 
bounds the straths, casts oíf languor, traverses the 
plains of the Mid Glen, finding no obstacle in the 
land oí oak, coursing the way. A chariot of fine 

wood with wicker-work, having two yellowÍsh 

iron wheels and a bright silver pole with bright bronze 
mounting. A frame very high and creaking, with 
metal fastenings. A curved yoke richly gilt, — two 
rich yeUow looped reins. The /ertsi' h3.rd and straight 
as sword-blades. 

§ 51. "In the chariot a sad,* melancholy man, 
comeliest of the men of Erin. Around him a soft 
crimson pleasingf tunic {/úan), fastened across the 
breast, where it stands open, with a salmon-brooch 
of inlaid gold, against which his bosom heaves, 
beating in full strokes. A long-sleeved linen kirtle 
with a white hood, embroidered red with flaraing 
gold. Set in each of his eyes eight red dragon gem- 
stones. His two cheeks blue-white and blood-red. 
He emits sparks of fire and burning breath, [with 
a ray of love in his look. A shower of pearls, me 
thinketh, has fallen into his mouth. Each of his 
two eyebrows as black as the side of a black 
spit, On his two thighs rests a golden-hilted sword 
{claideb), and fastened to the copper frame of the 

* Lit. black. 

t Of five plaits, TE. 


cheird hfch n-erred n-Índnse, cless níad ntwbair uasa 
errid óencharpaíA [Ara ar a bélaib isin charput sin 
araile forseng fánfota forbrec. F'alt íorchas forrúad- 
for a mulluch, Gipne findruine for a etan nád leced 
a folt fúa agid. Cúachi di ór for a díb cúladaib hi 5 
taircellad a folt. Cochline ettech immi co n-urslocud 
for a díb n-ulendnaib. Bruitne di dergór ina láim dia 
tairchelland a eochu.] 

52. " Is banna rfa frais ón trá," or si, " atgénammár 
asa samail in fer sin" or Medb. ro 

[R.] "Braó mara bara bledmaill blog dergthened 
tond mairnech mathrúamdas 
mórbruth m-borrbíastíe 
brisiud rauád raórchatha ^ 

comboing tar écrait n-écomlund 15 

allbach m-bratha brógene. 
Bruth raatho murtchend for cethraib 
cuirethar glond ar glond cend ar chend, g 
Canaid cóir coscrach crideraail 

frÍBÍn Coinculaind comchosmail. 20 

Cutanméla mulend múadmraich." 

díamaDtai hi cengul dá creit cróncharpait. Scíath coacorda 
CQ comroth argit co túagmQaib óir úas a dib n-imdadaib. Focheird 
hích n-erred n-indns immad cless comluith úas a errid óenchar- 
pait. Ara ar a bélaib isin charpul sin araile forseng fánfota. 
' nuad, £ff. 
* or Medi, Eg. 

'" samlaib, Eg, or Medb om, Eg; aSaml an f sin, H. 

" broamara, Eg; H. '^ athruamda, Eg. 

'* cing (Jiir comboing), Eg; n-eccomlaind, Eg; n-egcomlaind, 
H, '* allbach mbratha, LU. 

" bruth mathgaman for mincethf for ecraiti imirth- glonn ar 
glonn, Egj murtchét forcrethaib, LU; mortcet/iJr cretaib, H. 

'" cisne cur coscrach cridamarV fri C, Eg. * Concl. LU. 

^ Cotanmela ama/ meilius muilend muadbraicch, Eg; Cutan- 
mela ama/ meles muihnd muadh mbraich, H. 


chariot is a blood-red spear {gai) with a sharp meítle- 
some blade on a shaft of wood well fitted to his hand. 
Over both his shoulders a crimson shield {sclath) with 
a rim of silver, chased with ligures of animals in gold. 
He leaps the hero's salmon-Ieap into the air and does 
many hke swift feats besides. Such is the chief of a 
chariot-royal.] Before him in that chariot there is 
a charioteer, a very slender, tall, much frectrled man. 
On his head very curly bright-red hair, with a filiet 
of bronze upon his brow which prevents the hair 
from faUÍng over his face, On both sides of his head 
patins (or cups) of gold confine the hair. A shoulder- 
mantle about him with sleeves opening at the two 
elbows, and in his hand a goad of red gold with 
which he guides the horses." 

§ 52. " Truly, it is a drop bef ore a shower ; we 
recognise the man írora his description," quoth 

" An ocean fury, a whale that rageth, a íragment of 

flame and fire ; 
A bear majestic, a grandly moving billow, 

A beast in maddening ire : 
In the crash of glorious battle 

Through the hostile foe he leaps, 

His shout the fury of doom ; 
A terrible bear, he is death to the herd-of-cattle," 
Featf upon feat, head upon head he heaps : 
Laud ye the hearty one, he who is victor fully. 
As fresh malt is ground in the miU shall we be 
ground by Cuchulainn." 

* A lenn of contempt for the ordinary soldiers. 
+ Í.Í. deed. 


"Tong a toing mo thuaí/i," ol Medb, " mád co féirg 
dothí CiSchuÍaind chucund, meles muilend d/c 
forcél braich rocruaíd, is aralaid coto[n]mélani in fer 
sin a óenur ar úir ocus grían, cía nobetis fir in cóicid 
uli immond hi Crúachain, mani fochhthtf»- a bruth ; 
ocus a brig." 

53. "Ocus hi fecht sa cinnas dothíagat ?"ol Medb. 
" Dóit fri dóit " or ind ingen. " leóit fri leóiL 
fuámain fri íuamain. gúalaind fri guálaind, 
bil fri bil. , fonnad fri fonnad. , 

fid fri íid. carpflí íri carpaí. 
dosfil uH a baídmáthair." 
[R.] "Comlúd marc ra-buada raaidm toraind foU- 
trethan trom ainbthine allchlfu fri immalldu 1 
fortacrith in n-írind imtrén trómthuinset." 
" Mná finna fornochta íriú" ol Medb. 
"aurchíche aurnochta etrochta. 
collfn n-ingen n-aurlam n-iwchomraic 
liss aurslocthi. búirg fsfenbéla. ; 

Dabcha úaruisci. dérguda indlithi 

' Tonga eí reliqua mas combaraind dotíet cucunn ^mai meiles 
muilend mbuathbraich. last Cucul. chugalnn ama! meiles dec 
n-oirccel mbraith rochruaid is amlnírf cotameila an fer sin a íenar 
ar uir ocus grian cie no beitis fir an cuigiV/ uile umaind mine 
foichlit- a bruth, Eff; cotunmelam, Lj cotonmelam in fer sin, H ; 
cotomélam, Zí/; Tothfei Cucl. cucund, //. 
' ol "í/ledb, Eg. 

" bil fri bil. dos fiht uile a buidmathair. fid fri fid fonnad fri 
fondad carpoí', Eg; tusfui! uile a buidmathar, L. 

'^ bil fri bile tas fuil uile a bhuaidhmalha;> fidh fri fidh, H, 
•* Comluth mbarc, Eg. '^ fri imallad, Eg. 

1, Eg. " fris, Eg. 

,ic, Eg; nicomraic, H. 
" bruigh, Eg; buirc, H. 



" By the god of iny people," said Méve, " I swear 
if it be with fury Cuchtilainn comes to us, lilte as a 
miU of ten spolces grinds very hard malt, so he alone 
wiU grind us to mould and gravel, should the whole 
province attend on us in Cruachan, unless his fury 
and viotence are subdued." 

§ 53- " How do they come this time?" quoth 

" Wrist to wrist and palm to palm, 

Tunic to tunic they stand, 
Shield to shield and frame to frame, . 

A shoulder-to-shoulder band, 
Wood to wood and car to car, 
Thus they aU, fond mother, are." 

" As thunder on the roof when breaking, 
With speed the chargers dash, ; 
As heavy seas which storms are shalting, 

The earth in turn they crash ; 
Anon it vibrates as they stritte, 
Their strength and weight are Iike and like. 
High their name, 
No ill fame I " 

Then Méve made speech : — 

" Women to meet them, and mony, in déshabille, 
FuU-breasted and bare and bonnie, in number weel ; 
Bring vats of cold water where wanting, beds ready 

for rest, 
Fine food bring ye forth, and not scanty, but of the 

Strong ale and sound and well malted, warriors' 



bfad glan imda braichlind muád mescmar 

feinne fothud 
fochen in cath tothóet bess nínortar tairis." 

54. La sodain doUuid Medb for fordorus ind liss 5 
immach isin n-aurlaind ocus tri coecait ingen lée ocus 
teóra dabcha uárusci don triúr láth n-gaile do[n]dánic 
resin sluág do tlathugud a m-brotha. Ro lád roga 
dóib iar sudiu, dús in bad tech íor leth dobertha do 
cach íir dfb, no in tech dóib a triur. "A tech for leith 10 
do cách" or Cuculaind. lar sudiu b«-thar i tigi co 
n-dérgothaib sainamraib an ro bo decli leó dona tri 
coecTí'Ca ingen, ocus dobreth Findabair la Coinculainn 
sech cách isin n-airicul irra bi, ocus tancatár V,\aid 
uh iar sudiu, ocus luid Ail///ocu5 Medb ocus a teglach 15 
n-uli, 00 rofersat íaslte fri hUltu. Frisgart Sencha 
míic AileUa : " Is maith lind " or se. 

55. Tíagait \j\aid iarom Ísin dún ocus dolleicther 
arrfgtech dóib amfl/ dorímther, i. secht cúarda and 
ocus secht n-Ímdada o thein co fraig. Airinich cré- 20 
duma ocus aurscartud dergibair. Tri stéill chréduraa 

' biad nglan, Eg^; mbuaidhmescmor, H. 
^ feine fothug«í^, Egy feinne fothut, //. 
* fochen in cach dotKt bess ninurlat tairis, Effs in cach, ff, 
' for dorus, //. " isin n-aurlaind 0/«, Eg-j tri La, £g. 

' donainic riassin slógh, E^; dotanic, H. 

^" dus in ba tech for leith do gach duine dib no an bud asntech 
doib a triúr, A^f,- for leith do cach fir di'í no in barf aointech, H. 

" larsuidi'ií lotur i tigib, -E"^y Tech for leth . . lar suidiu badur 
i tigií, //■ 

^* ocus an ro, LU; sainemlaib, E^; din tri L ban dobretha 
doib ocus dobretha Findabair do C, Eg/ dona trí L ingen do- 
bretha doib ocus dobreath, //; dobretha doibh 7 dobreth, L. 
" Luid Meu» ocus OiW/, £g. 
"* Tiegait iaroOT Vlai'íí uile, E^. 

"* airenech credumfe i tulaigh an toige teuch n-darach go 
tugad slinnti, Eff/ aireinfch credhuma i tul- an tighe, //. 


Let the gates of the burg be set slanting, open the 

Hail ! íhe battalion that's cantering won't kill us, 

ywis ! " 

§ 54- Thereupon Méve went out by the high door 
of the palace into the court, thrice fifty maídens in 
her train, with three vats of cold water for the three 
valiant heroes in front of the hosts, in order to alleviate 
their thirst {lil. heat). Choice was straightway given 
thetn so as to ascertain whether a house a-piece should 
be allotted them or one house among the three. 
" To each a house apart," quoth Cuchulainn. There- 
after such as they preferred of the 150 girls are 
brought into the house, fitted up with beds of sur- 
passing magnificence, Findabair in preference to 
any other was brought by Cuchulainn into the apart- 
ment where he himself was. On the arrival of the 
Ultonians, AiliU and Méve with their whole house- 
hold went and bade them welcome. "We are 
pleased," quoth Sencha, son of AÍIilI, responding. 

§ 55. Thereupon the Ultonians come into the fort 
and the palace is left to thein as recounted, viz., seven 
" circles " and seven compartments from fire to parti- 
tion, with bronze frontings and carvings of red yew. 
Three stripes of bronze in the arching oí the house, 
which was of oak, with a covering of shingles. It had 
twelve windows with glass in the openings. The dais 
of Ailiil and of Mfeve in the centre of the house, with 
silver frontings and stripes of bronze round it, with 
a silver wand by the fronting facing Ailill, that would 



i taulaich in taige. Tech darach co tugi slinned. DÍ 
senistir déc and co comlathaib glainidib friu. Imdui 
AiW/fz ocus Medba iromedon in tige. Airinig airgdidi 
impe ocus steill chreduma ocus flesc 2.ÍTgdide ocond 
airinuch ar bélaib Píúella adcomced midhsse in tige 5 
do chosc in teglaig do gr-í's. Tairmchellsat gascid fer 
n-\5\ad 6n dorus díarailiu dond n'gthigocus ardopettet 
a n-íés ciúil, céin both oc aurgnom dóib. Bói trá dfa 
farsingi in tige i tallastár formna lath n-gaile in choicid 
uli im Conchobwr, Concobwr immorro ocus Fergus ro 
mac Róich i n-imdaí Aile//a ocus nonhoT di láthaib 
gaile fer n-Ulín/ol chena. Tosnairnechtár fieda mora 
iar sudiu. Batár and iarom có cend trí lá ocus trl 

56. Bá iar sudiu conacrad AiU// do Chon- 15 
chobur co n-Ultu immi, cid dia ra bi arréim. Dorrími 
Sencha iarom in caingi'» immá tuUatár, i. im chomuaill 
in trír chauríií/immá cuTíií/imír ocus im chomúaill na 
m-ban immá tússigecht Ísna fiedaib, úair n( rodmatár 
a m-brethugud Ínnách baUu aili acht ocut-su." Soch- 20 
tais AihV/ la sodain, ocus ni bu f^hd leis a mínma. 
"Nirbo chucum-sa éra" or sé "robo chóir dál inna 
caurath sin do thabairt, mdwi tabrait^r ar miscais," 
" Ni bá nech bas íerr nodgléfe ém " or se " atai-siu." 

^ gleordha glainidhe, H. 

* airgide, Eg; stiall, Eg; flesg aii^t, H. ' ardííjpetit, H. 

* Boi di fairsinge co tallastar formna lath gaile fern-Ulot/iiut. 
OC aurgnam bidh doib, H. 

'^ lath ngaile ier n-Ulíiií olch£«a. Tosnaimechf, H ; Tosnair- 
nechtaCiir fleda mora iarsuidiu, Eg. 

" teora ocus teora n-oidche (jj'í'), Eg; oidqi, Eg. 

'^ Bai iarsuidiu trath conaccrad, Eg. 

" cid dia rabi arréim ont., Eg; imme. Dorime, H. 

" caíg, LU. 

'• ni rotlamathor, Eg; ni rot mailh, H. 

" nir ba, Eg. ^ mine tabarthaei, Eg. ^ ar Sencha, Eg. 



reach the mid " hips " of the ho-jse so as to check the 
inmates unceasingly. The Ulster heroes went round 
from one door of the palace to the other, and the 
rausicians played while the guests were being pre- 
pared for. Such was the spaciousness of the house 
that it had room for the hosts of valiant heroes of the 
whole province in the suite of Conchobar, More- 
over, Conchobar and Fergus mac Róich were in 
Ailill's corapartment with nine valiant Ulster heroes 
besides. Great feasts were then prepared for fhem 
and they were there until the end of three days and 
of three nights. 

§ 56. Thereafter Aiiiil inquired of Conchobar with 
his Ultonian foUowing what was the purport of his 
march. Sencha narrated the matter on account of 
which they had come, viz., the three heroes' rivalry 
as to the Champion's Portion, and the ladies' rivalry 
as to precedence at feasts — "They could not stand 
being judged anywhere else than here by thee." At 
that Ailill was silent and was not in a happy mood. 
" Indeed," quoth he, "it is not to me this decision 
should be given as to the Champion's Portion, unless 
it be done írom hatred." " There is really no better 
judge." "Well," said AiHlI, "I require time to con- 
sider." " We really require our heroes," quoth 
Sencha, "for great to timid folks is their value." 
" For that then three days and three nights sufEce 
íor me," quoth AÍIÍII. "That would not forfeit friend- 
ship," answered Sencha. The Ultonians straightway 



"Maith liinsa ré scrutáin daw/ fris dawu" or AihV/. 
" Recam-ni a les ém ar curaid," ol Sencha, " ar is mór 
do midlachaib allóg," " Lór lim-sa á tri lá ocus 
teóra aidchi fri sodain" ol AiU'U. "Nf forcraid cairde 
da»w anl sin " ol Sencha. Timgartatar UUtd celebrad 5 
iar sudiu ocus bátár budig ocus dob^rat bCTjnachtain 
do AiU'U ocus do Medí, ocus dob-?rtatar mallachtain 
do Bricr/W, iSair iss e fodrúair a n-imchossait, ocus 
lotar dia crích iar sudiu, ocus íácbait L.oegaire ocus 
Conall ocus Coinculainn dta m-brethugud do Aih'//. 10 
Ocus dob^íthe praind cetna do cach fir dlb cach 

57. Dobretha a cuit dóib Índ aidchi sin, ocus 
, dolléicthe tri caittini a húaim Crúachan dia saigid, i. 
tri blasta druidechta. Techit iarom Conall ocus 15 
LoegdíVe íor sparrib na tigi ocus fácbait a m-biad oc 
na bíastaib, ocus feoit fón samaii sin cusarnabárach. 
Nirtheig Cuculainn assa inud frissin m-btasta rosiacht 
chuci, acht in tan dosíned Ín beist a bragit cosin 
n-esair, dounsi Cuchulainn béim din claid/wi^ na cend 20 
doscirred di mar bad do charraic. Nothairned si 
sfs di sudi. Nirthomail ocus nfrsúan Cuculainn fon 
cruth sin co matain. Rothinsat na caif, o robomaten, 
ocus atcessa iat-som fon cruth sin arabarach. "Nach 
leór a comram sin do bor m-brethugud " or Aúill. 25 
" Ná tho/' or Conall ocus L,oegaire, " ni fri biasta 
chathaigmit-ni, acht is fri dóini." 

' dan frís áano, LU ; dam fris {om. da'ío), Eg. 

* cairde son ar Sencha, Eg. 

* ocus bator buide ocus dobfrtataf benachtain dond righ ocus 
n rigain ocus dobenatar mallachiain do BricnW, Eg. 

* Loegairí B., Eg. 

' Ocus dobreth proinn c. do gach fer dib cech n-oidche, Eg. 
' beis, LU; " doscrred, LU. 



bade farewell ; being safislied, they left their blessing 
with AiUU and Méve and their curse with Bricriuj 
for it was he who had Incited them to strife. They 
then departed from the territory of Méve, having left 
Loigaire and Conall and Cuchulainn to be judged by 
AiliU. The hke supper as before was given to each of 
these heroes every night. 

§ 57. One night as their portion was assigned them, 
three cats from the Cave of Cruachan were let loose 
fo attaclt them, i>. three beasts of magic. Conall 
and Loigaire made for the rafters, having left their 
food with the beasts. In thaf wise they slept tiU the 
morrow. Cuchulainn fled not from his place from 
the beast which attacked him. But when it strefched 
its neck out for eating, Cuchulainn gave a blow with 
his sword on the beast's head, but [the blade] ghded 
o£F as 'twere from stone. Then the cat set itself 
down. In the circumstances Cuchulainn neither ate 
nor slept. As soon as it was early morning the cats 
were gone. In such condition were the three heroes 
found {lit. seen) on the morrow, " Does not that 
trial suflnce for adjudging ye ? " asked Ailill. " By no 
means," quoth Conall and Loigaire, " it is not ag^inst 
beasts we are striving, but against men." 



■ Befote 58, Luid iarowí Ailí'// inaairicul ocus dobfí- a druim 

h»s 63, 64, £ria[í]raigid ocus ni bu sáim a mf«ma ocus ba aing- 
cess laiss in dál dodfánic ocus nírchotail ocus ni 
roloing co cend tri lá ocus teóra n-aidche, conid and 
asbírt Medb : " Is midlachda no tái" ol si. "Mani 5 
brethaige-seo, brethaigíet-sa," " Is andso dam-sa ém 
a m-brethíí;f»(/," or AÍlí'//, "ocus is mairg cosa tuced." 
" Ní andsa 'iramorro," ol Medb, " fó dáig " or si " na fil 
etcr créduma ocus findruini, atá e,Ur Loegíií're ocus 
Conall Cernach. A fil da«o" or si " et^r findruini ocus 10 
dergór, ata et^r Conall Q,eniach ocus Coinculainn," 

59. Ba hand sin tra conaccrad l.oegatre Buadach 
do Medb iar scrútan a comarli, Is and sin ashert 
Medb fri Loegdí^fi: "Fochen a hoegairi Buadai^" ol 
si " is comadas caurtjtómír do thabairt dait, ríge líéch 15 
n-Erí«w dait úain-ne on trath sa, ocus in caurafhmír 
ocus cuach créduma ocus én findruini for a lar, conid 
nica lat sech cach hi comartha m-breithe, ocus nín 
accathar nech aile occut, conid tárfas isin Críébrúaid 
Conchohuir deód lái ; in tan dob^rthar in c^uraíhmir 20 
etruib, bád and sin tadbíe do chúach fíad mathib Ulad 
uili. Bid lat in c^maíhmir iarom ocus ní chossena 
nech do láthaib gaile íer n-lliad ol chena frit, uair bid 
comarda n-aichnid !a UI/« uli aní no m-hera. latt," 
lar sudiu áoherax in cúach do hoegairiu Buadach, 25 

• dobert, Eg: 

' ocus ni ba saim lais a menma, Eg'; ba haincces, ££■. 

3 dus fain/r, E^. * teora ia, Eg. ' milaechda, E^. 

' is andso : i. is dohg, L(/. ' a m-brethugud am., Eg. 

8 ní andsa : i. ni dolig, LU ; a b-foil, Eg; a fuil, H. 
w dono, Eg. " Conid ann asmbert Medb, Eg. 

" ar si, Eg. " uainde, Eg. " ocus én om., LU. 

" a g-com«rthE, Eg. *' an \an dotnbertar, Eg. 

^ uili om., Eg; H. 
^ comartha n-aitbgni la UIíw Ín ni bíre lat, Eg. 



§ 58- Ailill having gone to his chamber, set his 
back against the wall. He was disquieted in mind, 
íor he took the difficulty that faced him to be fraught 
with danger. He neither ate nor slept till the end of 
three days and íhree nights. "Coward !" Méve then 
called him, " if you don't decide, I will." "Difficult 
for me to adjudge them," AiIiII said; "it is a rais- 
fortune for one to have to do it." " There is no 
difGcuIty," quoth Méve, " for Loigaire and Conall 
Cernach are as different as hronze and Jindruint ; * 
Conall Cernach and Cuchulainn as diíferent as _/íW- 
ruim and red gold." 

§ 59. It was then, after she had pondered her 
advice, that Loigaire the Triumphant was summoned 
to Méve. "Welcome, O Loigaiie the Triumphant," 
she quoth ; "it is meet to give thee a Champion's 
Portion. We assign to thee the sovranty of the heroes 
of Erin from this time forth, and the Champion's 
Portion, and a cup of bronze with a bird chased in 
white metal on its bottom. In preíerence to every 
one else, take it with thee as a token of award. No 
one else is to see it till, at the day's end, thou hast 
come to the Red Branch of Conchobar. On the 
Champion's Portion being exhibited among you, then 
shalt thou bring íorth thy cup in the presence oí 
all the Ultonian nobles. Moreover, the Champion's 
Portion is therein. None of the valiant Ultonian 

^ White metal. 



ocus a lán do ífii aicnetai and. Ibid ina dig iarom 
for lár ind rlgtaige allind robói isin chiiach. "Atá 
and sin fled chaurad dait trá," ol Medb, "doroimle 
corbat cétach cetbUadnach ar bélaib óc n-Ulad uVi," 

60. Celebraid Loegairí iar sudiu, ocus congarar 5 
Conall Csrnach do Meidb fon innas cetna co lar ind 
rígthaige, " Fochen a Chonaill Cernaig," ol Medb, 

" is comadas c^uraiAmír et reliqua, ocus cuach find- 
ruini da«o ocus én óir íor a lár et reliqua." lar sudiu 
daK£> iarom dobírar do Conall ocus a lan do fin et 10 

61. Celebraid Conall, i. iar sudiu, ocus tfagair 
uadib ar chend Conculaind. "Tair do acallaim ind 
ríg ocus na rigna " ol Ín techtííire. Bá and bói Cúcu- 
lainn oc imb^rt fidchille ocus Lóeg mi2C Rfangaíí'rt a je 
ára fessin. " Is dom chuitbiud-sa ón," or se, "fuiris 
dobMha bréc im nach meraige." La sodain doUécÍ 
fer dina feraib fidchiUi don techtaire, co m-b(ii for lár 

a inchinne, conid ed dochóid ior lic trascair a báis, 
co torchair etír AiUV/ ocus Medb. "Aill amai ! " ol 20 
Medb "iúrthund Cuchuldiww," or si, "dfa siabairthgr 
immi." Atasraig Medb la sodain ocus luid corránic 
co Coinculainn, co tard [a] dí láim imma brágit. 
"Tabair bréc im nách n-aile" or Cuchulainn. "A 

' aiccenta, Eg; '^d\s.iom ina asndig for lar f/f., Eg; aicenta 
ann 7 '■Caid'xAtom ina aoindig, H. 
^ adsin, LU; ata sin, Kg. 

* Celabrid dono L., Eg; cong'artliar, Egj congairi, H. 
^ iarsudí'a dobíH Ín cuach, H- " fessin om., Eg. 
'* dons feraib, Eg. 

" doluid for ling trasccrad a bais, Eg; docliua/ií4 for lar 
trascair a bais, H. ^' or si om., Eg. 

" Alafraig Me. lasodaiw ocus luid comboi a b-farad Conc. ocus 
dorat a di laim imo bhragait, Eg; atfraigh, H; ataíraig, LU. 
" co tart a di !aim, H. 



heroes wiU dispute it further with thee. For the thtiig 
thou art to take away with thee shall be a tolten of 
genuineness in the estimation of all the Ultonians." 
Thereupon the cup with its full of luscious wine was 
given to Loigaire the Triumphant. There and then* 
he quaffs the contents at a draught. " Now you have 
the íeast oí a. champion," quoth Méve. " I wish 
you may enjoy it a hundred hundred years at the 
head of all Ulster." 

§ 60, Loigaire thereupon bade íareweli. Then 
Conall Cernach in lilce wise was summoned into the 
royal presence. "Welcome," quoth M^ve, "O Conall 
Cernach ; meet it is to give thee a Champion's Por- 
tion, with a cup of white-metal besides, having a bird 
on the bottom of Ít chased in gold." Thereafter the 
cup was given to Conall with its full oí luscious wine. 

§ 61. Conall bade farewell. A herald was then sent 
to fetch Cuchuiainn. "Come to speak with the king 
and queen," quoth the messenger. Cuchulainn at the 
time was busy playing chess with Loig, son of Rianga- 
bair, his own charioteer, "No mocking," he quoth ; 
" you might íry your hes on some other fool." Having 
hurled one oí the chessmen, it pierced the centre of 
the herald's brain. He got his death-biow therefrom, 
and fell between AÍhll and Méve. "Woe is rae," 
quoth Méve ; " sorely doth Cuchulainn work on us his 
fury when his fit of rage is upon him." Thereupon 
Méve got up and came to Cuchulainn, and put her 
two arms round his neck. "Try a lie upon another," 
quoth Cuchulainn. "Glorious son of the Ultonians 
♦ Lit. on the floor of the palace. 


mflic amrai UIiíí/ocus a lassair líéch n-Er£«n, nf bréc 
as áil dún iramut" ol Medb. "Cfa thíastaís formna 
l^ch n-Er«in uile, is duit-siu dóbínnafs remib anf 
imombethe, úair atodaimet fir hEreK« úasaib, ar 
allud ocus gail ocus gasciiid, ar áne ocus óetid ocus 5 

62. Atsraig Cúculainn la sodain ocus téit la Medá 
co ránic a rígtech, ocus feraid AÍli'// ftfeiti friss co mór, 
Ocus dobífar cúach dergóir dó ocus a lán do ffn 
sainemail and ocus én do lic lógmair for a lár, ocus 10 
áoherar cutrwmma a da súlu do dracon dó leis sech 
cách. "Atá fied chaurad dait sund tra" ol Medí, 
" Daromle corbat cétach céth\\acÍTiac& ar belaib óc 
n-UW uli." "Ocus issí ar m-breth-ni daMo beós," 
or Aili// ocus ol Medb, "uair tiachat fil-siu fein hi 15 
cutrwmmus fri ócu U\ad, cona be do ben hi cutrwm- 
mus fri a mná, ocus ni forail lind corop si ceta the 
do gn's ria ranáib UW uli ar thus hi tech n-óil. Ibid 
Cuchulainn iarotn ina óendig allán róbói issin cúach 
ocus celebraid iar sudiu dond ríg ocus dond rigain 20 

' a lasair, Jfy lassair, £^,- lassar, Z [/. 

' cia tistais, Sg'; H. ' rempoib, Eg; adadaimet, Eg. 

' ar luth, Eg; H. * ocus oide, Eg. 

' Atafraig, Eg; affraig, LU; atfraig, H. 

' co mór om., Eg; failti moir fris . . . dobírt, H. 

* do fin aicenta atid, Eg; dfin aicentai, H. 

" sul, Eg; do leis sech cách ow., Eg; Ata sund ^d cuTod 
duit d1 Me., Eg. " doroimle tra cor ba, H. " dono, Eg. 

" uair nachat fuili si ag cuttumus frie cach, ceni be do ben a 
cutramus fría mnaib V\ad ni forail lind corabsi ceta te dogress ria 
mnaib UW a tech n-oil, Eg; uar nachat filsiu a cutrumus fri 
cach cépe do ben a cutrumus fri mnaib Vlad ni furail lind coropsi 
ciata the, H. 

'■ cona be, LU; Síúies, Rem. on the Facs. p. 14 ; cona he, Facs. 

"■ orailind, LU ; where it begins a new line on the margin is ; 
ocus is áiUin ni. " ibit, LU; Íarom om., Eg. 

" cáuch, LU; na oidig an cuach, H. 



and flame of the heroes of Erin, 'tis no lie that is to 
otir liking where thou art concerned. Were all Erin's 
heroes to come, to thee by preference would we grant 
the quest, íor, in regard to fame, bravery and valour, 
to distinction, youth and glory, the men oí Erin 
actínowledge thy superiority." 

g 62. Cuchulainn got up. He accorapanied Méve 
into the palace, and Ailill bade him warm welcome. 
A cup of gold was given him full of luscious wine, 
and having on the bottom of it birds chased in 
precious stone. With it, and in preference to every 
one else, there was given him a lump, as big as his 
eyes twain, of dragon-stone. " Now you have the 
íeast of a champion," quoth Méve. " I wish you 
may enjo^ it a hundred hundred years at the head oí 
all the Ultonian heroes." " Moreover, it is our verdict," 
quoth Ailill and Méve, " inasmuch as íhou thyself 
art not to be compared wifh the Ultonian warriors, 
neither is thy wife to be compared with their women, 
Nor is it too much, we thinlc, that she should always 
precede a!I the Ultonian ladies when entering the 
Mead Hall." At that Cuchulainn quaffed at one 
draught the full of the cup, and then bade íarewell 
to the king, queen, and household all. 


[Thereafter he foUowed his charioteer. "My 
plan," quoth Méve to Ailill, " is to keep those three 
heroes with us again to-night, and to further test 


ocus don tegiuch uli f (ocus luitli co ranic Em&in 
Macha deoidh lai ogus (sic) nirobe la hUita rolamadh 
imcomarc sc do neoch dib atriu (sic) co tanic doibh co 
roijid ocus dail isin tig). 


[Ocus luid iar sin indeg^d a cheli. "Aiá ctSmarli lim" ol 5 
Medb fri AiIiV/ " fastud Ín trír churad út ocaind innocht doridisi, 
ocus ftrrmtha aili do thabairt forro beus." " Déna " ol AiIiV/ axs\ai 
as adlaic let fessin," Fastaitir iarom ind fir, ocus bírtair hi Cnia- 
chain iat ocus scurtir a n-eich.] 

63. Dobretha rogu doib, cid biad noragad dia 10 
n-echaib. Asbert Conall ocus LoegiJzW airthend da 
blíadan do thabairt dia n-echaib. Grán eórna \xa.morro 
rothog Cuculainn dfa echaib. Feótar and ind aidchi 
sin. Rointir in banchuri etorro hi trf ; dobretha 
Findabair ocus cóeca ingen impi hi tech Conculainn, 15 
dobretha Sadb Sulbair ingen aiie AÍU//a ocus Medba 
ocus cóeca ingen impi hi farrad Conaill Cernaig, do- 
bretha Conchend ingen Cheit maic Magach ocus 
cóeca Íngen malle fria hi farrad L,oegairi Buadaig. 
Nothathiged Medb fessin ivamorro co gnáthach sin 20 
tech i m-bói Cuculainn. Feótar and ind adaig sin. 

64, Atragat iarom matain muich íarnabarach ocus 
ti'agait sin tech i m-bátar in míícrad oc cur Ín roth- 

' berta, LU, Facs. '" dobreth, Eg; do ragad, Eff. 

" L. ocus Con., Effj oirrthind, Eg. '^ dothog, Eg. 

'^ Feoatar {sic) and iarom roinntj'r in bantrairAí a tri etomi, Eg: 

" dobF, Egj impi om., Eg. 

■' dobreta, LU ; dobí, Eg. 

" impi(=mallefriaof Zí/) abfarrad L.B,, íTg-,- No thaithuig'ei/ 
Medb feisin comim'c an tech amboi Cuc, Eg. 

^' Feotar to adaig sin om., Eg. 

"^ Atregait maidíH mó ocus tiegoit isin tech amboi an macrad 
ag cur rothclessa;. Geb- iarom L., Eg. 


them." " Do as thou deemest right," quoth AiHll. 
The men were then detained and broiight to Cruachan 
and their horses unyoked.] • 

§ 63. Their choice of food was given them for 
their horses. Conall and Loigaire told them to give 
oats two years old to iheirs. But Cuchulainn chose 
bar!ey grains íor his. They slept there that night, 
The women were apportioned among them. Finda- 
bair, with a train of fifty damsels, was brought into 
the stead of Cuchulainn, Sav the Eloquent (Sadb 
Sulbair), another daughter of Aihll and of Méve, 
with fifty maids in attendance, was ushered into the 
presence of Conall Cernach. Conchend, daughter of 
CeÍt mac Magach, with fifty damsels along with her, 
was brought into the presence of Loigaire the Tri- 
umphant. Moreover, Méve herself was wont to 
resort to the stead of Cuchulainn. They slept there 
that night. 

§ 64. On the morrow they arose early in the 
morning and went into the house where the youths 
were performing the wheel-feat. Then Loigaire 
seized the wheel and tossed it tiU it reached halí 
up the side wall. Upon that the youths laughed and 
cheered him. It was in reality a jeer; but it seemed 

* This passage in bracketa is clearly the work of the com- 
piler QÍ Lli- The reading in H is/ And he ■wéhI till he arrived 
at Emain Macha at the end of day, and therc 'ivas none of the 
Ulíonians •who -would ■vcntttre to ask news as to any of the three 
until the lime came to eat and to drinh in the Mead Hall. The 
n H passes on to § 72, which seems in sequence. 



clessa, Gebthi hoegaire iarom in roth ocus noscuir 
i n-arda, co ranic midhsi in tigi, Tibit in mircrad im 
sodain ocus dobí/'at gáir dó, Bá do chuitbiud Loe- 
gairi ón. Indarra L,oegaire 'iminorro bá gair búada. 
Gebthi Conall dawo in roth ocus ba do lár. Focheird 5 
iarom in roth co hochtaig ind rígthigi, Fochfrdat in 
macrad gair foa. Indar la Conall, bá gáir chom- 
maidmi ocus búada ; gair chuitbiuda luíjnorro lasin 
macraid ani sin, Gebthi da«u Cuchulainn in roth, 
ocus ba hetarbuas tarraid hé. Focheird daíw in roth lo 
i n-ardi, co rolái a ochtaig on tig, co n-dechuid in roth 
ferchubat hi ia\matn fri les anechtair. Tibit in mdcrad 
gáir commaidmi ocus búada im Choinculainn. Indar 
la Coinculainn ínijfiorro bá gair chuitbiuda ocus íona- 
n:iait foc^nlat in mncrad im sodain. 15 

65. Tic Cuchulainn do saigid in bantrochta ocus 
berid a trf coécta snáthat úadib, ocus nosdíbairg na 
tri cáecta snáthat cách indiafd araih díb, co tarla cach 
snáthat dfb hi cró araili, co m-batar ina líni fon samail 
sin, Tic iarom dia saichtin doridisi ocus dosb^ a 20 
snáthait f ein illaim cacha hoenmná dfb doridisi. Molsat 
ind óic da«ti Coinculainn im sodain. (Timnáit iarom 
iar sudi celebrad dond ríg ocus dond rfgain ocus don 
tegluch olchena.) 

' rothclessíC Geib, Eg, * roscuir . . . midles, £^. 
^ doberaid gair doba (jiit) do chmthíud L., Eg. 
' andarla L. ba g^r buada, A^. ' in tige, £_^. 
'^ gair cwi., Eg'j' fochírd dna {st'c) in roth co rolla a oachtoi^ 
don rigtig con dechiurfan roth ferchubat fer oglaig a talmiiiV) fria 
iis anechtair, E^. 

" nos diubraic cachíe dib indiaig araile cotarla cech snathat 
dib a cro a ceile combata?' ina line fon samai/ sin, E^. 
'8 a cró a ceile, Eg. ^ aridisi, E^. 

'• dip, Egj- doridisi, om., Eg. Molsat ind oig im sodoín Cc, 


to Loigaire a shout oí applause. Conall then took 
the wheel ; it was on the ground. He tossed it as 
high as the ridge-pole of the palace. The youths 
raised a shout at that. It seemed to Conall it was a 
shout of applause and of victory. To the youths it 
was a shout of scom. Then Cuchulainn took the 
wheel — it was in mid-air he caught it. He hurled it 
aloft tiU it cast the ridge-pole from off the place ; the 
wheel went a man's cubit into the ground in the 
outside enclosure. The youths raised a shout of 
applause and of triumph in Cuchulainn's case. It 
seeraed to Cuchulainn, however, it was a laugh of 
scorn and of ridicule they then gave vent to. 

§ 65. Cuchulainn anon sought out the women- 
folk, and took thrice fifty needles from them. These 
he tossed up one after the other. Each needle went 
into the eye of the other, till in that wise they were 
joined together. He returned to the women, and 
gave each her own needle into her hand. The young 
braves praised Cuchulainn. Whereupon they bade 
farewell to the king, the queen, and household as 



66. "Eircid" ol Medb "do thig m'aiti-sea ocus 
mo tnumnii, Í. Ercail ocus Garmna, ocus feraid for 
n-aigidacht innocht and, Lotar iarom rompa iar cor 
graphand doib i n-óenach na Cruachna ocus ruc 
Cuchulainn buaid ind denaig fo thri. Ro sagat iarom ; 
tech n-Garmna ocus Ercoil ocus ferait fíelti friu. 
"Cid dia tudchaibair ? " ol ErcaÍl, " Diar m-brethu- 
gud dait-siu " ol iat. " Eircid co tech Samera," ol se, 

" ocus dogena íor m-brethugud." Lotar dú iarom 
ocus focertar fíadain leó. Ferais Samera fslti friu. ' 
Dobretha Búan ingen Samera grad do Choinculainn. 
Asbertatar iarom fri Samera, bá do brethugud dóib 
dodeochatár chuci. Fóidis Saméra iat Íar n-urd 
cusna genitib gUnni. 

67, Luid Loegairi ar thús. Fácbaiside a arm ocus 1 
a etach occo, Luid dawo Conall fon cíímraa cetna 
ocus fácbais a góo occo ocus dobretha a armláich 
leis, Í. a claideb. Luid dawo Cuculainn in tres adaig, 
Nosgrechat na geniti dó, imma comsinitar dóib. 
Brútir a gai ocus bristir a sciath ocus rebthair a : 
étach immi, ocus nosciirat ocus nostríethat inna geniti 
hé. "Amein a Cuculainn" or Lág "a midtach 
thruag, a siriti lethguill, dochóid do gal ocus do 

' Eirgid ar Medb co teg mo aittisiu ocus mo iname i. Ercuil 
OCus Ga.niiaD ociis feraid ba.r n-aidigicht (sic) and anocht. Lotar 
rcmpu iar cur grafaind fo trí. Ro segait teach n-Garman iarom 
ocus Ercuil ocus fertha/V failti friu and. Cia dia tuchaboir ol 
Ercoil. DÍermbrethugad ol iat. Eirgid co tech Saimere ocus 
dodena bur m-brethugíírf. Lotar ierom ocus fochíniait fiaduin leo 
ocus feraid Saimere failti friu, E^: 

" I. tSaimere, E^. " Asbfrtatar fo chuci oín., E^. 

'* iar n-urd iatt gusna gentib giinne, E^. 

" LuJd L, ocus fagbus a arm, Eg^,' iarthus Lt/., Facs. 

" daJM om., E^. 

" áono, Eg; Roscrechsatt na genite ^xnne do, Eg. 

^ na geniti glinne, Eg. " a miolaiich, Eg. 

^ ocus do gaiscei/ ar culaib ati tan isit urtraig not malartaigend. 
Siabartha im C.acd ide ocus imsaig na hurtracha ocus nuscerbann 
ocus nusbruigend, etc., Eg. 




§ 66. " Go to the abode of my foster-father and to 
that of my stepmother," quoth Méve— viz., Ercol 
and Garmna — " and there put up as guests to-night." 
They kept on their way, and after running a race 
at the Cruachan Gathering, thrice did Cuchulainn win 
the victory of the games. They then went to the 
abode of Garmna and of Ercol, who bade them 
welcome. " For what are ye come ? " asked Ercoh 
"To be adjudged by thee," they quoth. "Go to the 
abode of Samera ; he will adjudge ye." They went 
accordingly and guides were sent with them. They 
were welcomed by Samera, whose daughter Buan 
íell in love with Cuchulainn. They told Samera it 
was in order to be judged they had come to him. 
Samera despatched them as they were {Ht. in their 
order) to the Amazons of the Glen. 

§ 67. Loigaire went íirst, but left his accoutrements 
(arms) and clothing with them.* Conall also went, 
and left his spears with them, but took his chief 
weapon, to wit, his sword, away with him. On the 
third night Cuchulainn went. The Amazons shrieked 
at him. He and they fought each other till his spear 
was splintered, his shield broken, his raiment torn off. 
The Amazons were beating and overpowering him. 
" O Ciichulainn," said Loig, " you sorry coward, you 

* i,e. with the Amaions. 



gaisced, in tan ata urtrochta notmalartat. Sia[ba]rthar 
co urtrachta im Choinculainn andaide ocus imsoi 
cusna húathaib ocus noscírband ocus nosbruend iat, 
co-mbo lán in glend dfa fulriud. Dobeir iarom 
bratgaisced a muntiri leis ocus Ímsoi co tech Saraera 5 
cona choscur co airm i m-batar a muintfr. 

68. Ferais Samera fíelti fris, conid andaide asbíH : 

" Nf dlig coraraind curadmfr 

ferba" brachtchib brothlochi 

sceó*^ mátai '' moogthi lo 

tre banna miach tortaide ^ , 

fri immescad cóemchóecat 

fri Coinculaind clothamra. 

Is cú ferna fodluigthe 

Ís bran carna comramaig. g 15 

is torc tren hi fothugud 

traithaid nerta lochnamat 

am^/ Eed '' tria fithicén 

is cú othair ér Emna j^ 

is mCTic^omarc ban búaignigi. 20 

is fland tedma tromchatha 

méti cénid chocerta 

nachasella sithethar. ^^ 

Cim* a fresib frithbera. 

bati longbaird loingsither. 25 

^" ocus imsoi cona coscar co hairm, E^. 

§ 68. FeraÍd Saimera failte fris conerbairt andidhe. Ni dlig 
comroinn cwiatánh. fearba (i. bai) braichthe brotloige sceo mata 
(i, muc) mooichthi tre banna miach toztaide (i. bairgen) fri hian 
mescad ccem caogad fri Co[i]ncú clothamra is femai foglaichte is 
bran cemai comramoch is torc tren a fothií^dh trstha/ií nertai 
lochnatnat amail xd tre fidaitcen is cu otair eremna ís menmarc 
ban buaidnige is flann tedma tromchathai meite cenit coiccertai 
nacha selb- siteath- ceim freisin fritbfrai baiti longbairt loing- 
sithír is culmaire bolgadai is cruid {ecAíai mod chímai Ís gnia 
(i. [s]egda) griannai geilfine cid do arbad cutroma fri hmgmri leo 
airbi no fri Conall cloth amra qid nab- hi in Eimfr uaneble nacha 
is ail sntuata (owr tuata : no tumse, /Aus sntumíe) RÍa n-aindrib 
banarduldrf no cinged an olibrigach i tech medracA midcuarda 
conid de imrorduimse a chotnraind ni dlig. Ni, E^ 



squinting savage ! gone are your valour and your 
bravery when it is sprites that beat you." Then 
Cuchulainn was enraged at the sprites. He turned 
back upon the Horrors, and cut and gashed them 
till the glen was fiUed with their blood. He brought 
oflf his company's brave banner with him and tumed 
back in triumph to the seat of Samera, the place 
where his companions were. 

§ 68. Samera bade him welcome ; 'twas then he 
made speech : — 

" Not right to share the champion's íare of the cook- 

ing pit, 
Fatted kine, well-fed swine, honey and bread ; 
Through ladies' cunning take not his share 
From Culann's Hound, of name and fame. 
Cleaver of shields, raven of prey, 
That bravery wields, eager íor fray — boar of battle. 
As wood takes fire, strifces his ire Emain's foes ; 
Of victory-loving women belov'd — plague of death. 
A judge in deeming, not in seeming, eye flashing 

Hostile ports where ships resort his tributes know ; 
His chariot rides the mountain-side, 
Pride of his clan, he leads the van, an eagle of war. 
Why to Loigaire, lion of fences, Iiken him ? 
Why unto Conall, rider of fame ? 
Why should not Emer, of mantle shining — ít is our 

pleasure through grace divining — 


-L foli- 

is culmaire'' bolgada«.' 

is crú fechta* modcerníe, „ 

is gnsel grianna gelfini 

cid dó arbad chutrummus 

fri Lóegairi leo airbi 5 

no fri Conall clothriatha. j^ 

Cid dond Emir úanfebli" 

nachasáil in nert nuadaf 

rfa n-andrib án ard Ulad 

no chinged ind ollbrigach ^ lo 

hi Tech medrach Midchúarda 

conid de imrordaim-se 

a chomraind ni dlig." 

Ni dlig c. a^ 

" Isí mo breth-sa duib tra," for se, "in zavaíhntír do 15 
Choinculainn ocus tús d(a mnái ría mnaib \}\ad, ocus 
a gaisced úas gaiscedaib caich cen motha gaisced 

69. Lotar dó iar tain co tech Ercoil. Ferais-jíí/e 
ííelti friu. Feótar and ind aidchi sin. Fúacrais Ercoil 20 
comlond dó féin ocus dá eoch íono, Luid Loegíí/>£ 
ocus a ech na n-agid. Marbais gerran Ercoil ech 
LoegíiíW. Fortamlaigid Ercoil for LoegdíVc fessin, 
ocus tecis-síi/e remi. Iss ed conair rodngab do Emain 
dar Eis Ruaid, ocus iss ed ruc leis tásc a muintiri 25 
do marbad do Erccíl, Luid da«:í Conall ión c»mma 
cetna hi teced remi iar marbad a eich do gerrán 
Ercoil. Iss ed doUuid Conall dar Snám Ráthaind 
do saicht[h]Ín Emna. Robáided da«o Ráthand gilla 
Conaill and sin isind abaind, conid de ita Snám 30 
Rathaind o sin ille. 

" uas gasceí/aib in Is/úi^uile, Eg. 

'* Lotar co tech Ercaile iartoin feraid siofe, Eg. 

* fograis do«fl Erc, Eg. 

^ fortamluis Earc. feisin for L. ocus teilh-side roime, Issed 
conair do gab tar Duip tar Drobais tar Ess Ruaid míc Badaim 
ocus issed rug lais tasc a muintire do m3.xhad do 'E.zcoil. Luid 
áano C, Eg. ™ Robaidfii didiu Raithem/ gilla, Eg. 




Oí Ultonian ladies high-born and all, enter lirst the 

merry Mead-Hall. 
Cuchulainn's share, well I woí, 
It is not just [elsewhere] to allot. 

" My verdict to ye then ; the Champion's Portion 
to Cuchulainn, and to his wife the precedence of the 
ladies of Ultonia — Ciichulainn's valour to rank above 
that of every one else, Conchobar's excepted." 

§ 69. After that they went to the abode of Ercol, 
who bade thera welcome. They slept there that night. 
Ercol challenged them to combat with himself and 
with his horse. Whereupon Loigaire and his horse 
went against them. The gelding of Ercol fcilled the 
horse of Loigaire, who was himself overcome by Ercol, 
before whom he fled. He toolt his way to Emain 
across Assaroe, and brought tidings with him of his 
comrades having been killed by Ercol. Conall like- 
wise fled, his horse having been killed by Ercol's ; the 
way he went was across Snám Ráthaind (Rathand's 
Pool) on the route to Emain. Moreover, Conall's 
gillie, Ráthand, was drowned in the river there, and 
aíter him Snám Rathaind takes its name since. 

§ 70. The grey of Macha, however, killed the 
horse of Ercol, and Cuchulainn took Ercol himself 
bound behind his chariot along with him to Emaín. 
Buan, daughter of Samera, went on the track of the 
three chariots. She recognised the track of Cuchu- 
lainn's íramed chariot, inasmuch as it was no narrow 



70. Marbais in Lfathtnacha 'imtnorro ech Ercoil 
ocus noscertgland CuchuWíi» ErcíJiI fessin indiáid a 
charpait leis, co ránic Emain Macha. Luid tra Buan 
ingen Samera for lorc na tri carpat. Atgeóin slicht 
fonnaid Conculainn, fodáig nách sét cwmung no- ! 
théiged ; nochlaided na muru ocus no íairsinged ocus 
nolinged dar bwTiadaib. Rolebling ind Íngen trá léim 
n-úathmar Ína diaid-sium for furis in charpait, co 
n-ecmaing a tul immon n-all, co m-bo marb de, conid 
de ainmnigthf/' Úaig Búana. In aim tra ráncatar ■ 
Emain Conall ocus Cuculainn, iss and ro bas* oc a 

, cáiniud and, ar ba derb leó ammarbad, iar m-breith a 
tásca do Lóegairi leis, Adfiadat iarom a n-imtechta 
ocus a scéla do Choncob«^ ocus do mathib Ulad ol 
chena. Bátár immorro ind errid ocus ind láith gaili 
ol chena oc toibeim for Líégairi don badbscel ro innis 
o cheiib. 

71. Conid and asbcH: Cathbath inso sfs : 

[R.] " Dirabuafd sceóil fartbi ecland la borg dub aithech. 
dorardusi la henechgris rúanad roulad. 
nímárulaid Lóega/re cosnam cirt curadmír 
iar n-dorair a badbscelai. 
is Cuculaind dligethar arroét cain comram búad 

cenglathar err thrén, tnuthach. indiaid erri óen- ' 

' iTnmorro om., Eg; ech Ercail iar comrac do C. firis ocus 
nuscenglan C. 'E.Tcail féssin andiaigh a carpitíl do Emoin Mac^. 
Luid Buan 'mgert t-Saimeri do«a fbr lorg na tri carpaí. Aithceoin 
slicht Conc. i, an fonna fodaig, £f. 

'' Roleblaing 'iarom an ingsn leim n-uathmar tar bf'nai ina 
diaigsium for an carpu/, £g. 

'" In amm (amsir?) tra rain/í C. ocus Conallt (sic) Emoin is 
and robas og a c^'tnei/, Eg. '^ a taisc. '^ arche«a, Eg. 

'" olchena owí., Eg; ar L. dona badbscelaib, Eg. '^ foirtbe, Eg. 

19-20 la \,axc urbaid dorairduire la heifi ruanad roulad, Eg; 
Over dorardiisi LU has tke glosses i. dochur i. trenfer ; the lacter 
gloss seems to belong to another word. 

^' cert, Eg, ^ dligetar, LC/; dligethar , , . buaid, Eg. 

^ andiaig err íen-carpuí't, Eg. 


traclc it used to take, but undermining walls, either 
enlarging or else leaping over breaches. The girl at 
last leapt a fearful leap, following him behind in his 
chariot's track till she struck her forehead on a 
rock, whereof she died. From this is named Buan's 
Grave. When Conall and Cuchulainn reached Emain, 
they found the Ultonians holding a keen for them, 
inasmuch as they felt certain they were ^ílled. Such 
the report Loigaire brought. They then related their 
adventures and told their news to Conchobar and to 
the Ultonian nobles generally. But the chiefs of 
chariots and the men of valour as a body were re- 
proaching Loigaire for the Iying story he told con- 
cerning his íellows. 

§ 71, Then Cathbath made speech to this effect: — 

" A tale inglorious ! Base 
Outlaw, blaclc and false, 
For shame 1 thy face from sight ! 
Ultonia's Champion's Portion 
Unhappily didst thou dispute, 

Nor won it by right, 

— Thy lying upset— 
Cuchulainn with Ercol has coped, - 

Victor in battle-fight ; 
Tied at the tail of his car, 
Hercules strong he held ; 
Nor do men conceal his feats, 

His great havoc they tell. 


Ni chelat a márgnima adrollat a mororgni. 
is err thren tairpech is cur cáin cathbúadach 
is glond catha chomramaig. Ís mortcend do 

is riatai di rathbriugad. is triath tailc tnuthgaile. ; 
Conid de imrolaim-se comraind curadmiri fris 
is dimbúaid sceoiL" 
Diamb. s. 


72. Roansat ind óic día n-imratib ocus dia radse- 
chaib. Rosoich iarom co praind ocus co tomaltus 10 
dóib, ocus iss e Sualdaim mac Roig athair Conculaind 
fessin rofrithaig Ultu ind aidchi sin. RoHnad iarom 
ind aradach dabach Conchobaí'r dóib. Dobretha a 
cuit immorro inna fíadnaisi iar sudiu, ocus tíagait na 
rondairi dia raind. La sodain rogabsat ind randaire 15 
in curadmír asin raind ar thús, " Cid ná tabraid in 
ca.\iTadmír ucut " ar Dubtach Dóeltengad " do churaid 
úrdalta, úair nf thudchatar in triar ucut o ríg Criiachan 
ca« chomartha n-derb leó do thabairt in cuTadmíre do 
neoch díb." 20 

73. Atsraig 'Loegaire Buaáaci la sodain ocus túar- 

* Ni chelat a márgnima oi'i., Eg; adroUat : i. ÍnnisÍt, LU. 
atmlat a moroirgne, Eg. ' is err tren tairptech, Eg. 

' is riataige rath brugh-, Eg. " and oicc iarom, Eg. 

'" Ro soich iaro/n co roind ocus dail doib ocus ro linad iarom 
an uradui'A dabach ConcubflzV doib co ro bo lan do lin/i seim 
somesc ocus ise Subaltam mac Roigh athJiiV Concul. feissin ro 
frithail an ag sin. TobrÉ'/A immorro a cuit ina b-fiadnuse iarmw 
ocus tiegoit na ranairige dia roiB, Eg. 

" aigchi, LU. " arthús om., Eg. 

" ni tangatar Ín triar n-ugat, Eg. 

" n-derb ag nech dib Íman cmadmiri Eg; oc neoc dib ima 
curath-, H. " affraig, LU. 



A champion glorious, battle-victorious, 

When rageth the fray, 
Slaughter-head of the hosts, 

A lord that careers in might, 
Zealous of valour and stout ; 

With him to dispute 

The Champion's Portion, 
Unworthy a hero's repute." 


§ 72. The heroes ceased their discussions and 
their babblings and fell to eating and enjoying 
themselves. It was Sualtam mac Roig, íather of 
Cuchulainn himseif, who that night attended upon 
the Ultonians. Moreover, Conchobar's ladder-vat 
was filled for them. Their portion having been 
brought to thetr presence, the spencers came to serve, 
but at the outset they withheld the Champion's 
Portion from distribution. " Why not give the 
Champion's Portion," quoth Duach of the Chafer 
Tongue, "to some one of the heroes; those three 
have not returned from the King of Cruachan, having 
no sure token with them, whereby the Champion's 
Portion may be assigned to one of them ? " 

§ 73- Thereupon Loigaire the Triumphant got up 
and Hfted on high the bronze cup having the silver 
bird [chased] on the bottom, "The Champion's 
Portion is mine," he quoth, "and none may contest 
it with me." " It is not," quoth Conall Cernach. 
" Not alike are the tofcens we brought off with us. 




gaib in cuach creáuma ocus én airgit íor a lár. " Is 
lim-sa in c^uTodmir" for se "ocus nf chosna nech 
frim he." " Xi bá lat," íor Conall Cemach, " nf hinund 
comartha tucsam hnd." Cuach credufna tucaisiu, 
cuacA findruini immorro thucusa. Is réil asiwded fil 5 
etorro, conid lim-sa in ca.uraíAmír." " Ni ba la 
nechtar dé etfir," for Cuculainn, ocus atasraig si'eie 
la sodain ocus asbert ; " N( tucsaid comartha tairces 
churaíkmír dúib," íor se, "achi nirb áil don rig ocus 
don rigain cusa rancaibair tullem ecraiti frib atind hi lo 
tewd. Nl mó áano a cin frib " ol se " indás na tucsaid 
uadib. Bid Um-sa immorrti " for se " in curathmir, 
úair is mé thuc comartha suachnid sech cach," 

74. Tanócaib súas la sodain in cuach n-d^rcóir 
ocus én do liic logmair for a lár ocus cutrwmma a 15 
dá sula do dracoin, conidnacatár mathi UW uli im 
Concobwr mnc Nessa. " Is mesi iarom " for se " dlig« 
a C3.uzaihmir, acht marii brist^r anfír fcrm." "Cotmi- 
dem uh" ol Qouchohur ocus Fergus ocus ol mathi 
UW ol chena, " is let a cAuraihmir a breith Ai\el/a 20 
ocus Medíd." "Tong a toing mo thuath," for Loe- 
gaire ocus for Conall Cernach, "ni cúach cen chreic 
dait in cúach thucais, ar ro bói di sétaib ocus mainib 

2 ni rocosna nech friumb. Ni ba lat im ar C. C, Egs he 
om., Ega^A H. ' lind om., Eg. 

° isin fed . . . ni ba ra nechtar &thar i 
íil aturtha . , . NÍ ba nechtar íatha {sic) 
lasodain ni t»csaid, H. 

' ataftaig, LU. ' ocus asbírt o 

" eccrajde frib itina atenn. Ni mo doni 

a tucsaidh uad, Eg; atas a twcsaid uadh, H. 

" donogaib, Eg; tógaibh, H. " mac Nessa om,, Eg. 
" Cotmideth- ar C, Eg. '^ olchena om., Eg. 
^ tongusíe i toing mo (r/V) ar L. B., £g. 

^ An ro boi di setoib ocus do moinib it tselbai is3«if doratais 

61 C, Eg; isin fedh 
^r . . . atfraig sidhe 

a chin frib o 


Yours is a cup of bronze, whereas mine is a cup of 

white metal (Jindruini). From the difference between 
them the Champion's Portion clearly belongs to me." 
" It belongs to neither of you," quoth Cuchulainn as 
he got up and spoke. "Ye have brought no token 
that procures you the Champion's Portion. Yet the 
king and queen whom ye visited were loath in the 
thick of distress to intensify the strife. But no less 
than your deserts have ye received at their hands. 
The Champion's Portion remains with me, seeing I 
brought a token distinguished above the rest." 

§ 74. He then lifted on high a cup of red gold 
having a bird chased on the bottom of it in 
precious dragon-stone, the size of his eyes twain. 
All the Ultonian nobles in the suite of Conchobar 
mac Nessa saw it. "Therefore Ít is I," he quoth, 
"who deserve the Champion's í'ortion, provided I 
have fair play." " To thee we all award it," quoth 
Conchobar and Fergus and the Ulster nobles as 
well. By the verdict of Aihll and of Méve the 
Champion's Portioii is yours." " I swear by my 
people's god," said Loigaire and Conall the Victorious, 
"that the cup you have brought is purchased. Of 
the jewels and of the treasures in your possession 
have you given to AiHU and to Méve for it in order 
that a defeat might not be on record against you, 
and that the Champion's Portion might be given to 
no one else in preference. By my people's god, that 
judgment shall not stand; the Champion's Portion 
shall not be yours." They then sprang up one after 
the other, their swords drawn. Straightway Concho- 


it selb^e iss ed doratais airi do Ail/V/ ocus do Medí, ar 

na ructha dobag Ít cend, ocus ná tarta in cznrathmír 

do neoch aili ar do bélaib." "Tong a toing rao 

Xhuaíh," íor Conall Cemach, "ni bá breth Ín breth 

rucad and, ocus ni bá lat in cuTathmír." Cotnerig 5 

cach díb diaraili la Sod/zm cusna claidbib nochtaib. 

TothíCt Concobwr ocus Fergus etorro iar sudiu. Tol- 

lécet alláma sís f<5 chétóir ocus dob^rat a claidbi ina 

trúallib. "Anaid," ol Sencha, "denaid mo ríar-sa." 

" Dogenam " or íat. 10 

Si 75-78 75- " Eircid co Budí mac m-Bain" for se "co a 

Ef. t, fi. áth, ocus dogéna íor m-brethugud." Lotar iarora a 

v^cb triur churad co tech m-Budi ocus adííadat dó a toisc 

foitow*' ocus a n-imresain immá tudchatar. " Nách dernad 

""""'■ etercert dúib hi Cruachain Ái la hAiiill ocus la Meidb?" 15 

ol Budi. "Dorigned om," for Cúculainn, "ocus ní 

daimet ind fir út fair eter." " Ni didemam om," oldat 

ind fir aili, "ar ni breth eter aní rucad dún," "Ni 

hansa do nách aiH íor ra-brethugud dawo," ol Budi, 

"in tan na hantai for cocírtad Medba ocus PáXella. 20 

Ata hm" for Budi "nech íolimathar for m-brethugud, 

Í. tíath miíc Imomain fil oc á loch. Dó dúib 

>. dia saichthin, ocus dogena íor cocMad." Fer cu- 

machta mori á in t-Uath mnc Imomain sin, 

notolbad in cach richt ba haHc leis ocus no gniad 25 

druidechta ocus ceHa commain, Ba sé sin da«í7 Ín 

siriti on ainmnigthiV Belach Muni in t-Siriti, 

de atbíí-the in siriti de ar a met nodelbad i n-ilrech- 


76. Rancatár iarora co Úath co a loch, ocus fíadu 
o Budi leó, Atfíadat iarom do Oath anf má tud- 

" lasodain om., Eg; gusna doidmib nochtaib ina lamaib, Eg; 
donoet Coacobur ocus Fergus etorra iarsuidiu, Doliecet, Eg. 
' a daithbiu, H. '° dodenam ol siat, Eg; H. 



bar and Fergus intervened, whereupon they let down 
their hands and sheathed their swords. "Hold!" 
quoth Sencha, "do as I bid." "We will," they quoth. 


§ 75- " Go forth to the ford'of Vellow, son of Fair. 
He wiU adjudge ye." Accordingly the three heroes 
went to the abode of Vellow {Budi). They told 
their wants and the rivalries which brought thera. 
"Was not judgment given you in Cruachan by 
Ailill and by Méve ? " said Vellow. " In sooth 
there was," quoth Cuchulainn, "but those fellows 
don't stand by it." " Stand by it/' quoth the other 
men, "we wiU not ; what has been given us is 
no decision at all." " It is not easy for another to 
adjudge ye then," quoth Yellow, " seeing ye did 
not abide by Méve and AiliH's arrangement. I 
know," he continued, "one who will venture if, viz,, 
Terror, son of Great Fear (Uath mac Imomain), at 
yonder loch, Off then in quest oí him ; he will 
adjudge ye." A big poweríul fellow was Terror, son 
of Great Fear. He used to shift his form into what 
shape he pteased, was wont to do tricks of magic 
and such like arfs. He in sooth was the wizard 
from whom Muni, the Wizard's Pass, is named. He 
used to be calied " wizard " from the extent to which 
he changed his divers shapes. 

§ 76 ■ "^o Terror at his loch they accordingIy 
went, YelIow had given them a guide, To Terror 
they told the cause for which they had sought him 

chatar dfa saigthin, AsbM Oath friu, nodlemad a m- 
brethugud, acht co n-daimtis namraá íor a breith. 
" Fodémara " or iat. Fonaiscid íono. "Atá cennach 
lim-sa," for se, " ocus cé bé uab-si comallas frimsa hé, 
bid he beras in curadraír." "Cinnas cennaig sin?" 5 
for siat. "Biáil fil lira-sa," for sé, "ocus a tabairt 
iUáim neich uaib-si, ocus mo chend do béim dím-sa 
indiu, ocus me-si dia béim de-sium imbárach." 

77. Asberat immorro Conall ocus LoeguíVc, na 
dingentais in cennach sin, ar ni bói occo-som do 10 
chumachta a m-bith beó iarna n-dichennad, ackt 
mavíi rabi oca-sum. Obbsat iarom fair Conall ocus 
Loegaí'rí Ín cennach sin. Clatbffí^t araili iibair, co 
n-d^sat cennach fris, i. 'Loegaire do beim a chind 
de in cétla ocus a imgabáil dó, ocus Conall d(a im- 15 
gabail ón mud chetna. Atb^rt ÍTamorro Cuculainn, 
00 n-dingned cennach fris, dia tuctha áó in curadmir. 
Atbírtsat immorro Conali ocus Loegaire, co leicfitis dó 

in CMradmir, dia n-demad cennach fri Úath. Fonais- 
cid Cuchulainn f<?rro-Sí'm cen cuiadmir do chosnara, 20 
dia n-dcmad cennach fri Uath. FonaÍsccit-sium fair- 
sium da«i? a dénam in cennaig. Dobeír Uath a chend 
forsin Uc do Choinculaind (i.' iar cor dó brechta hi 
faebur in belas), ocus dounsi Cuculainn béim da biáil 
féin do, co topacht a chend de. Luid íarom fon loch 25 
uadíb, ocus a bial ocus a chend na ucht. 

78. Tic íarom arabarach dia saichtin ocus non- 
ainethar Cuculainn dó íorsin Ucc. Tairnid fo thri 
in m-bial for a munel ocus a cúl rempi. "Atrai a 
Cuchulainn 1" for Úath, "rigi lééch n-Erf«« duit ocus 30 
in caradntir cen chosnam." Lotar dó a triur churad 

^ nosinithar, LU, 


out. He said he should venture on adjudgment pro- 
vided only they would adhere to it. " We will adhere 
to it," they quoth ; whereupon he solemnly pledges 
them. " I have a covenant to make with you," he 
quoth, "and whoever of you fulfils it with me, he is 
the man who wins the Champion's Portion." "What 
is the covenant ?" they said. " 1 have an axe, and the 
man into whose hands it shall be put is to cut off 
my head to-day, I to cut off his to-morrow." 

§ 77- Thereupon Conall and LoÍgaire said they 
would not agree to that arrangement, for it would 
be Ímpossible for them to live after having been 
beheaded, although he might. Therefore they de- 
clined (shirlced) that : [although other books narrate 
that they agreed to the bargain, to wit, Loigaire to 
cut off Terror's (Uath's) head the first day, and 
(on the giant's returning) that Loigaire shirlted his 
part oí the bargain and that Conall likewise behaved 
unfairly].* Cuchulainn, however, said he would 
agree to the covenant (bargain) were the Champion's 
Portion given to him. Conall and Loigaire said they 
would allow him that if he agreed to a wager with 
Terror. Cuchulainn solemnly pledged them riot to 
contest the Champion's Portion ií he made covenant 
with Terror. And they then pledged him to ratify 
it. Terror, having put spells on the edge of the axe, 
lays his head upon the stone for Cuchulainn. Cuchu- 
lainn with his own axe gives the giant a blow and 
cufs off his head, He then went off from them into 
the loch, his axe and his head on his breast. 

§ 78. On the morrow he comes back on his quest. 

* EvideDl]y an interpolalion of the compiler of Zi/. He ex- 

ptes5ly refers to olher books (araili libair). 




e'BCe ot Ibe 
words ihe 

tbe Meave- 

co hEmain iar tain, ocus* nirdaimset ind fir aili dó 
Coinculainn in breth rodnucad dó. Bói in t-imcosniím 
cetna beius imón cucadm/r. Ba si comairli UIíJíÍ íorro 
daíw a cur do saigid Conroí dia m-brethugud, Fcémit- 
sium dawo ani hi sin. 5 


79. Dollotar iar sin sin matin arnabárach a triur 
churad co cathraig Conroi, i. CucuW«« ocus Conall 
ocus hoegat're. Scorit a carpf» i n-dorus na cathracA 

iar sin ocus tiagait isa rígthech, ocus ferais ííelti móir 
friu Blathnat ingen Mi«d ben Conroí mai'c Dairi, ocus 10 
ní rabi Cúroí hi fus ar a cind ind aidchi sin, ocus 
rofitíV co ticfaitis, ocus foracaib comarle lasin mnái 
im réir na curad, co tísad don turus, dia n-dechaid 
sair hi tirib Scithiach, fo bith ní roderg Curui a claidffá 
i n-Erind, o rogab gaisced co n-deochaid bás, ocus 15 
nocho dechaid bfad n-Erend inna beóhi, cein rombói 
ina bethaid, o roptar slána a secht m-bliad«ií, úair ni 
rothallastar a úaill nach a alfud nach a airechas nach 
a borrfad nách a nert nach a chalmatus i n-Érind. 
Bói immorro in ben día reir co fothrocud ocus co 20 

° Dollotar ísin maitin arabarach a iriur cuTad i. Cu. ocus 
Con. ocus L. co. cathroi^ Conroi. Scuirit a cairpthi andorus na 
cathrach iarsuidiu ocus tiagait isin rigtech ocus fcrais Blathnait f, 
ind ben Conrui faihe friu, Sg^. 

^" Blatnac, Líf; naid, Lí/.- v. Note. '^ ar a cind om,, Eg. 

'* ocus ro fit/r ricfaitis, Eg; forfagaib, Eg. 

'* co tisíi^ Eg ; ar a n-dechaid, Eg. " sceitia, Eg. 

'* nocho dechaid Slokes, Rem. on the Facs., p. 14, no dechaid 
LU. Facs. condecha/ií bas ocus ni dechaiii biad n-'E.rend ina beolu 
cein ro bui ambetííí/ii oropdar lan a VII m-bl., Eg. 

" a uaill nach a allad nach a airdercus, Eg. 

" nach a nert nach a uaiU nach a calmatus, Eg. 

^ co foÍlE ocus fotracadh, Eg; inmesC, Eg. 


Cuchulainn stretches himself out for him ort the.stone. 
The axe with its edge reversed he draws down iVríce 
on Cuchulainn's neck. " Get up," quoth Terror ; " the 
sovranty of the heroes of Erin to Cuchulainn, and the 
Champion's Portion without contest." The three 
heroes then hied them to Emain. But Loigaire and 
Conall disputed the verdict given in íavour of Cuchu- 
lainn and the original contest as to the Champion's 
Portion continued. The Ultonians advised them to 
go for judgement unto Curoi. To that too they 


§ 79. On the morning of the morrow the three 
heroes, Cuchulainn, Conall and Loigaire, then set off 
to Fort Curoi. They unyoked their chariot at the 
gate of the hold, then entered the court. Whereupon 
Blathnat, Mind's daughter, wiíe of Curoi mac Dairi, 
bade fhem warm welcome. That night on their 
arrival Curoi was not at horae. But knowing they 
would come, he counselled his wife regarding the 
heroes until he should return from his oriental 
expedition into Scythian territory. From the age 
oí seven years, when he took up arms, until his 
demise, Curoi had not reddened his sword in Erin, 
nor ever had the food oí Erin passed his lips. Nor 
could Erin contain him for his haughtiness, renown 
and r3nk, overbearing fury, strength and gallantry. 
His wife acted according to his wish in the matter of 


folcuíi ociíB co lennaib iwmescaib ocus co n-dérgodaib 
sajft^picáib, cointar budig. 

■, . ÍÉfo. O thánic dóib iamw co dérgud, asbM in ben 
'. '/riú iar sudiu, cach fer dfb a aidchi do íairi na cath- 
rach, co tissad Ciiruf, " ocus dano," or si, " is amlaid 5 
atrubairt Cúruf, a fari dúib lar n-íesaib." Cipé aird 
do airdib in domain tra i m-beth Curui, dochanad 
[bricht] for a chatraig cach n-aidchi, co m-bo dé- 
inithir bróin mulind, conna íogbaithe addorus do grés 
iar fuÍMud n-gr-íne. 10 

81. Luid iaroOT hoegaire SuadacA dond faire in 
chétaidche, úair is hé ba sinser dóib a triúr, Robói 
isin t-sudiu faire iar sudiu co dered na haidche, con- 
naca in scath chuci aníar rodarc a sula co fota dond 
farrci. Ba dímúr ocus ba grainni ocus ba úathmar 15 
laiss in scáith (sic), ar indar lais rosiacht coiTÍci ethíar 
a arddi, ocus bá fodeirc dó folés na farrci fo a gabul. 
Is amlaid tanic a dochwm ocus lán a da glac lais do 
lommanaib darach, ocus robói eire cuinge sesrige in 
cech lomchrund díb, acus (sic) nir aithen-acht béim 20 
do bu« chraind dfb ac/it óen béim co c!aid/wí. Tolléci 
gécan dfb fair ; leicthe Loegaire secha. Cóemclóid fó 
dí nó fó thrf ocus ní ránic cnes ná scfath do Loegairju. 
Tolleci Loegaire d3.tio fair-seom gai ocus ní ránic hé. 

' sainemlaíb comdar buide, Eg. 

' ia.Tom om., Eg; isbert an ben friu iarsuidiu are teised ccíA 
fer dib oidchi do faire na catrach co tisírfCuroi o 
amlairf adub^rt Curi a faire duib iarnaesaib. Cepe aird tra di 
airdib in domai'« ambid Curoi no cafi (?) bris for an cathrai^ 
CDmdar limaigih- broin muilinn cona fogbaide a donis dogrfss iar 
b-fiiined n-greinc, Eg. 

' dincanad, L; docháinelh, Ll/ (omíííinghiriclit). 

conaca, Eg. 

• demithir, Zí/. " L. B. 

•* radarc a sula don farrgi, Eg. 

" granda, Eg. '^ lais a met 
coruicce eilhiar ara airdi, Eg. 

" a docham om., Eg; a di glac, Eg. 

*• nir aitherrach, Eg; do buain chroind, Eg. 

» leicthi L. - ■■ - ■ 

Tollece L. ga fairsin, Eg. ** om. he, Eg. 

scaith ar andar lais rosiacht 


bathing and of washing, providing them with refresh- 
Íng drinlts and beds most excellent, And Ít liked 
them well. 

§ 80. When bedtime was come, she told them that 
each was to talce his night watching the fort until 
Curoi should return, "And, moreover, thus said 
Curoi — that ye talce your turn watching according to 
seniority." In what airt soever of the globe Curoi 
should happen to be, every night o'er the íort he 
chaunted a spell, till the fort revolved as swiftly as 
a miU-stone. The entrance was never to be found 
after sunset. 

§ Sl. The first night, Loigaire the Triumphant 
took the sentry, inasmuch as he was the eldest of the 
three. As he Itept watch into the later part of the 
night, he saw a giant (Scath) approaching him far as 
his eyes could see from the sea westwards. Exceed- 
ing huge and ugly and horrible he thought him, for 
in height, it seemed to him, he reached unto the sky, 
and the sheen (broad expanse) of the sea was visibie 
between his legs. Thus did he come, his hands 
fuU of stripped oaks, each of which would form 
a burden for a waggon-team of six, at whose root 
not a stroke had been repeated aíter the single 
sword-stroke. One of the stakes he cast at Loigaire, 
who let it pass him. Twice or thrice he repeated it, 
but the slake reached neither the skin nor the shield 
of Loigaire. Then Loigaire hurled a spear at him 
and it hit him not. 



82. Rigid-som a láira 'co LoegíiiVe iar suidí'w. Bói 
tra dia fot na latnEe corroacht tar na teóra fuithairbe 
robátár etwrro ocond imdiburcud, conid iar sodain 
rogab ina glaic. C(ar bo mór ocus cíar bo airegda 
tra hoegaire, taliastar i n-óenglaic Índ fir dodfánic, 5 
feib thallad mac bliadna, ocus cotnomalt eier a df 
bois iar sudiu, amal tairidnider fer fidchilli for tairidin, 
Tráth ba lethmarb iarow ind innas sin, tolléci aurchor 
de la sodflí'w tar cathir ammuig, co m-bói for ind 
otruch i n-dorus ind rfgthige, ocus níroslaiced in 10 
cathir and et^r. Doruménatár ind fir aile tra ocus 
muinter na cathracA uli, ba léim roleblaing-seom tarsin 
czíhraig' ammuich d(a fácbail forsna feraib aile. 

83. A m-bátár and co deód lái co trath na íaire, 
luid Conall Ceinach issa sudiu na fari, úair ba siniu, 15 
oldás Cuchulainn. Fón innas cétna dawo ama/ forcóem- 
nacair do Loegaí'rj'a uli ind adaig thússech. In tres 
adaig da«o luid Cuculainn isi sudi fari. Ba sí sin tra 
adaig rodálsat na Trf Glais Sescind Úairbeóil, ocus 
Tri Búagelhaig Breg ocus Tri Maic Dornmair cheóil 20 
do orgain inna cathrach. Ba sí dawt) adaig robói hí 
tairngire don pheist robói Ísind loch hi farrad na 
cathr«ir/i íordiuglaim lochta in puirt uile eter dáine 
ocus indile. 

84. Búi Cuculainn tra oc frithaire na haidche ocus 3$ 

^ Roich- sim a laim do L., Eg. 

* do fot na laime co riacht, Eg; futhairbe batar etorra oc 
imdiubragad conad, Eg. 

* ciar ho hairida tarlas inn oen glaic Índ fir don fainic, Eg. 

" condomeilt, Eg. ' tairnidth- fer fichille for tairidin, Eg. 

* ballethmarb, Eg. 

8 doUecce urchar de tar cathra/^ amach, Eg. 

•^ ni rohoslaiged in cathraig (?) an inb- sin itiV, Eg. 

" Doraimnitar, Eg. 

" uh úm., Eg; lar cathriij^'" amuig, Eg. " for na, Eg. 

^' issin suidiu, Eg; ar ba sine oldas Cu. Dorala do áono fon 
'mávs SXÍD& a.mal forcosmnagar do L. an adaig thoiss, Eg. 

1' luid C. issin suidiu, Eg; Ba si sin tra agaid rodalsat na 
triglais sesciod uarbeoil tri buageltaig Breg tri inaic dornmair ceoil 
do orgain na catrach, Eg. " da«s om., Eg. ^ fordiuchlaim, Eg. 

" ag frithfaire na baidce ocus batnr mithurusa imi^ fair, Eg. 



§ 82. The giant stretched his hand towards Loigaire. 
Such its length that it reached across the three ridges 
that were between them as they were throwing at each 
other, and thus in his grasp he seized him. Though 
Loigaire was big and imposing, he fitted like a year 
old into the clutch of his opponent, who then ground 
him in his grasp " as a chessman is turned in a 
groove. In that state, half-dead, the giant tossed 
him out over the fort, till he fell into the mire of the 
fosse at the palace-gate. The fort had no opening 
there, and the other men and inmates of the hold 
thought he had leapt outside over the fort, as a 
challenge for the other men to do hlcewise. 

§ 83. There they were until the day's end. When 
the night-watch began, Conall went out on sentry, for 
he was older than Cuchulainn. Everything occurred 
as it did to Loigaire the first night. The third night 
Cuchulainn went on sentry [lit. into the seat of watch). 
That night the three Goblins (Greys) of Sescind Uair- 
beoil, the three Ox-feeders (?) of Bregia and the 
three sons of Big-Fist the Siren met by appoiníment 
to plunder the hold. This too was the night of which 
it was foretold, that the Spirit of the Lake by the fort 
would devour the whole host of the hold, man and 

§ 84. Cuchulainn while watching through the night 

* Lit. between his two palm 



bátar mithurussa imda fair. Tráth bá medon aidche 
dó iarom, co cilala in fothrond chuci. "Alla alla," íor 
Cuculainn, "cía fil alla ! más tat carait, connámus- 
nágat, mas tat námait, commosralat ! " Conggairet 
gairm n-amnas fair la sodain. Conclith Cuculainn 5 
forro iarom, conidammárb tarraid talawí a nií«bur. 
Ataig in cendáil occo isin sudi faire mod nad mod 
indesid inna sudiu. Conggair nanhur aile fair. Ro- 
marb trá na tri nowboru fó an innas cétna, co n-derms 
óencharnd díb eter cendail ocus fodbu. lo 

85, Ama/ rombói and iar sudiu co dered na haidche 
ocus ba scfth ocus ba torsech ocus bá mertnech, co 
ciiala cwmgabáil in locha i n-airddi, ama/ bid fótrond 
fairrci diraóre. Ni fordámair trá a bruth cacha raba 

di mét a thurse cen techt do descin in delm^ móir 15 
rochuala, co n-acca in comerge dorigni in pheist. 
Dóig leis dano robói í^'cha cubat inne uasind loch. 
Tosnúargaib súas far sudiu isin n-aer ocus roleblaing 
dochom na cathrach ocus adrolaic a béolu, co n- 
dechsad óen na rígthige inna cróes. 20 

86. Foraithme«afhar-som la sodain a foraracliss, 
ocus lingthi i n-ardi, corbo lúathidir rethir fuinnema 

^ Alla aila or Cu. cia fil alla mas tat carait conamasnagat mas 
dait natnaic conamusralat, E^: 

* gairm n-amnuj fair. lassodain conclich Cu. forru conad marb 
tarraid talom a nonbur, E^. ' addaig, £g: 

' indeiss, £gj congarat nonbur aile, £g: 

* na tri nonbair, E^,- xd cam, £^. '" fadba, Eg: 
" Ama/ robui, Effj- ama/ ronboi, Z. 

eirtnech, Eg-^' mertrech, LUy co cuala comgair, á 

" Ni fordamair tra a bruth ce robai do meit a toirsi 
do deicsin an delma moir ro chual-, £g: 

'" doroine in p£St, Eg. 

'^ Doigh lais robui trich& cubat di 
suas iarsuidiu isind aieor, £g. 

^ adroilg a beolti condechsat Ecn na rigtoigi fbr críes, Eg. 

-' Forraitmédorsom, í^fj' foraithmíwatarsom, Z.C. 


1 loch. Dusnuarcoib 



had tnany uneasy forebodings. When tnidnight was 
come he heard a terrific noise drawing nigh to him. 
/' HoUoa, Holloa," Cuchulainn shouted, "who isthere ? 
If fríends they be, let them not stir ; if foes, let them 
flee." Then they raised a tetrific shout at him. Where- 
upon Cuchulainn sprang upon them, so that the nine 
of them fell dead to the earth, He heaped their heads 
in disorder into the seat of watching and resumed 
sentry. Another nine shouted at him. In like manner 
he kiiled the three nines, making one cairn of them, 
heads and accoutrements. 

§ 85. While he was there íar on into the night, tired 
and sad and weary, he heard the rising of the loch on 
high, as it were the booming of a very heavy sea. How 
deep soever his dejection, his spirit could not brook 
his not going to see what caused the great noise he 
heard. He then perceived the upheaving monster, 
and it seemed to him to be thirty cubits in curvature 
above the loch. It raised itself on high into the air, 
sprang towards the fort, opened its mouth so that one 
of the palaces could go into ifs gullet. 

§ 86. Then he called to mind his swooping íeat, 
sprang on high, and was as swift as a winnowing 
riddle right round the monster. He entwined his 
two arms about its neck, stretched his hand tiU it 
reached Ínto its gullet, tore out the monster's heart, 
and cast it from him on the ground. Then the beast 
fell from the air till it resíed on the earth, having 




imón peist iminá cuaird, íadaid a dá glaicc immá 
brágit iar suidí'a ocus rorigi a. láim corrici ina cróes, 
co tóerbaig a cride este, co n-darala úad for iilmain, 
co torchair beim n-asc!aing don pheist asind áer, co 
rabe for lár. Imbeir Cuculainn in claidfí íuirre, co 5 
n-derna minmírend di, ocus dohei'r a cend co rabi 
oca isin t-sudi íaire ocon chendail aile. 

87. Tráth rombói and iar suid/» ossé aithbriste 
tróg isin dedoil na maitne, co n-acca in scáth chuci 
anfar dond [íjarrci et reliqua. " Bid olc ind adaig " ol 10 
se. "Bid messu daitsiu a bachlaig" ol Cúculainn. 
La sodain tolléci gégán dlb íair. Léicthi Cuchulainn 
[secha]. Coemclóid íó dí nó íó thri, ocus ni ranic 
cnes na scfath do Choinculainn. Tolléci Cúculainn 
gai fair-seom dawo ocus ni ranic. Rigid-som a láim 15 
co Coinculainn iar suidiu día gabáil ina glaic, zma/ 
rogab na firu aile. Focheird Cuculainn cor n-íach 
n-eirred de la sodain, ocus foraithmíwathar a foram- 
clis, ocus a claideí nocht úasa mulluch, corbo Iilathi- 
thir fíamuin, ossé etarbúas irabi imraa cúaird, conid 20 
dmia rothbúah de. "Anmain Ín anmain a Chuchu- 
lainn 1" or se. "Tabar rao thridrindrosc dam da«i>" 
ol Cuculainn. "Rot blat" ol se "feib dothafset lat- 

ding a lam corícce a 
co tarlaicc uad fbr 
iin aieor co roibe for 

' a di laicn iitia bragait iarsuidiu ocus 
gualainn ina crees co tarbaig a croidc eis 
taJmoin co torcair beim n-a^claiíi don pcist asin aieor c< 
talmaí'n. Iinrid C, £^. 

° minmirenda, £^j- ocus áomhen a eend ití co roibe 
donbir, L. ' ocus se, Jig. 

" isin degoil na mainde confaca, £g; don fairrge eí reliqua, Eg. 

" toUege, Eg. " leicti Cu. sechu csmclaid, Eg. 

'* DoUeÍce, Eg. " sine sium a laim, Eg. 

'* foraithmeTiatar, Eg; forathmanadar, LU. 

» ossé om., t.g. 

" condíma retarbbuía (?) de, Egj conndema retarbtmra, L; 
Anmain an anrtm/n, Eg. 


sustained a blow on the shoulder. Cuchulainn then 
plied it with his sword, hacked it to atoms, and took 
the head with hirn into the sentry-seat along with 
the other heap of skulls. 

§ 87. While there, depressed and miserable in the 
morning dawn, he saw the giant approaching him 
westwards from the sea. "Bad night," says he. 
" 'Twill be worse for you, you uncouth fellow," quoth 
Cuchulainn, Then the giant cast one of the branches 
at Cuchulainn, who let it pass him, He repeated it 
íwo or three times, but it reached neither the skin 
nor the shield of Cuchtilainn, Cuchulainn then hurled 
his spear at the giant, but it reached him not. Where- 
upon the giant stretched his hand towards Cuchulainn 
to grip him as he did the others. Cuchulainn leapt 
the hero's " salmon-Ieap," and called to mind his 
swooping-feat,* with his drawn sword over the 
monster's head, As swift as a hare he was, and in 
iuid-air circling round the monster, tillhe confused it 
by making it giddy {lit. till he made a water-wheel 
of him), " Life for life, O Cuchulainn," he quoth. 
" Give me my triad of wishes," quoth Cuchulainn. 
" At a breath f they are thine," he said. 

* The circling motion of a bird of prey suggests itself. 

+ Lit. Thou hasiíhem as tkey will come fo thee tvilh thy breaih. 
The three things were to be got for asking, provided they wete 
a,sked at one bteath. Thus, too, they were incitements to strife. 
Id a Welsh fairystory, also, a woman gets all the animals she can 


tai«áil." " Ríge l^ch n-Erend dam on trath-sa ocus 
in C3uradm/r cen chosnam frim ocus tús dommo mnái 
ría mnáib Ularf uli do gn's." " Rot bia" ol se la 
sodam fó chetóir. NI fitir, cfa arluíd úad Ínti robói 
oc aacallaim. 5 

88. Immóradi inna m^nmain Íar suidzu alléim doch- 
úatár a <fes comtha tarsin cathraí^, ar bá mór ocus bá 
lethan ocus bá hard alléim. Ba dóig lais-seom tra, co 
m-bad ó lémuHí (sic) dochúatár ind laith gaile tairse. 
Dammidethar íá di' día léraaim ocus forémid, " Mairg lo 
dorumalt a n-imned dorumalt-sa cus trath-sa imma 
cauraefmír" ol Cuculainn " ocus a techt liaim la féim- 
med Índ lemme dochúatár ind fir aile!" Bá sí tra 
bééthir dogéni Cuculainn oc na imratib-se. Nocinged 
for a chiilu etarbúas fot n-aurchora on cathraig, 15 
Docinged dano etarbiias dorisi asin baliu hi tairisfíf, 
co m-benad a thul cind frisin czthrat^. Nolinged 
dzno i n-arddi in fecht n-aile, co m-bo foderc dó 
anl nobíd isin cathra/^ uli. Notheiged dzno in fecht 
n-aile isin i.a.b>iain connici a glún ar thrommi a brotha 20 
ocus a neirt. In fecht n-aile dajií) nf thfscad a drucht 

' Mo tri drionroisc dam ar Cu. Rot mbia ol se feib dotissait 
la tanail, Eg: 

' Rotmbia ol se. Lasoduííi ni fitíV Cu. cia luid, Eg^; In LU 
tht stop is after fó chetóir. 

' Imroraidhi, £'^j- rochuatar, Eg. 

* in leim ocus doig laisjum tra ba do leim dochuatíir an laith 
gaile tairsiu. Domidethaj- fa di an leim ocus foreimii/. Maircc 
^omrumalt ind imned do rumaltsa, Eg. 

" ol Cuch. om., Eg; uaim anossa la feimd-, Eg. ' 

'* basthair dongne, Eg; oc na Ímratib se om., Eg. 

" for a culaib, Eg; fot n-urchair, Eg. 

" dono doridisi etarbuas assan baile atairissed, Eg. 

^ Noling anairdi a b-fechtus n-aile co teigeadh isii 
cotice a glun, Eg. 

"The Sovranty of Erin's Heroes be henceforth mine 
The Champion's Portion without dispute 
The Precedence to my wife o'er Ultonia's ladies 
"It shall be thine," he at once quoth. Then he 
who had been conversing with hira vanished he knew 
not whither. 

§ 88. He then mused within himself as to the leap 
his fellows leapt over the íort, for their leap was big 
and broad and high. Moreover, it seemed to him it 
was by leaping Ít that the vahant heroes had gone 
over it. He essayed it twice and íailed, "Alas!" 
Cuchulainn quoth, " my exertions hitherto about the 
Champion's Portion have exhausted me, and now I 
lose it through being unable to take the leap the 
others toolt." As he thus mused, he essayed the 
foUowing íeats : He would keep springing backwards 
in mid-air a shot's distance from the fort, and then 
he would rebound írom there until his forehead would 
strike the fort. Anon he would spring on high tiil 
all that was within the fort was visible to hira, 
while again he would sink up to his knees in the 
earth owing to the pressure oí his vehemence and 
violence. At another time he would not take the 
dew from off the tip of the grass by reason of 
his buoyancy of mood, vehemence of nature, and 
heroic valour. What with the fit and fury that 


do rind ind íeóir ar denmni ind aicnid ocus lúthige 
ind láthair ocus méit na gaile. Lasin n-adabair ocus 
lasin siabrad ro síabrad immi, fecht n-óen and cingthi- 
seom tarsin cathraig ammuig, corrabi thall immedón 
na ca.thracA i n-dorus ind Hgthige. Atá inad a da 5 
traiged isind lic fil for lár na c^ihrach, bale irrabi 
imdorus ind rfgtaige. Téit isa tech la sodain ocus 
tolléic a osnaid. 

89. Is and asb^rt Bláthnat ingen Mind hen Conrol : 
" Ni hosnad iar mbebail ém," or si, " is ósnad iar 10 
m-buaíd ocus coscor." Rofitir ingen ríg Insi Fer 
Falga trá a n-dodoraid (si'c) tarraid Coinculainn isind 
aidchi sin. Nir bo chian dano iar sin, co n-accatir 
Coinrot chucu isa tech, ocus bratgaisced ná tri nífebor 
romarb Cuculainn laiss ocus a cindu ocus cend na 15 
biasta. Asbfí-í la sodain iar cor na cendaile de asa 
ucht for lár in tige : " Ba gilia comadas" or se "do 
faire duine rfg do gr^ in gilla sa, at a chomrama 
óenaidche so ule. Aní immá tudchaibair imresain," 
ol se " imma cauríií/mfr, is la Coinculainn far ffrinne 20 
ar bélaib óc n-Er«í« uile hé. Cia beth nech bas 
chalmu and," or sé, "nf fil rosía lín comram friss," 

' 3 deinmne, £g-_; ar demni, iCj- luthaige in lath- ocus med 
gaile lassan siabf sin rosiabrad uime, E^: 

* cingte sium, E^. ' astech, Eg: 

* doUeicc a osíl as, Eg: 

" Blathnait ingm Mei«d, Eg: '" No hosfi iar mebail, Eg: 
'" acht is, £f. 

" Ron fitir, Eff; indsi bferfalgai andof tarraid Cu., E^: 
" con facatar, E£^; Conroi, LCf; chucta Ísin tech, Eg: 
^ cinda, EffJ cindnu, LU; na peiste, E^. 
'* Isbert iarsodain, Eg: " comadus dfaire, Eg. 
" ada comrama anaidche annso uile. indi Íma tudcabair 

uile hé om., Eg -, Cia beith neich bus calma ann ar se 
b-fuil nech ro sia hn comrara. Isi breth, Eg. 


raged upon him he stepped over the íort outside and 
alighted in the middte at the door of the palace. His 
two íootprints are in the flag on the floor of the hold 
at the spot where was the royal entrance. He there- 
after entered the house and heaved a sigh. 

§ 89. Then Mind's daughter, Bláthnat, wife of 
Curoi, made speech : "Truly, not the sigh of one 
dishonoured, but a victor's sigh of triumph." The 
daughter of the Idng of the Isle of the Men of 
Falga knew full well of Cuchulainn's evil plight that 
night. They were not long there when they beheld 
Curoi coming towards them, carrytng into the house 
with him the standard of the "three nines" slain by 
Cuchulainn, along with their heads and that of the 
monster. He put the heads from ofE his breast on to 
the íioor o£ the stead, and spolte : " The giUie whose 
one night's trophies are these is a fit !ad to watch 
a king's keep for aye. The Champion's Portion, over 
which you have fallen out wilh the gallant youths of 
Erin, truly belongs to Cuchulainn. The bravest of 
them, were he here, could not match him in number 
of trophies." Curoi's verdict upon them was : — 

"The Champion's Portion to be Cuchulainn's. 
With the 50vranty of valour o'er all the Gael. 
And to his wife the precedence on entering the 
Mead Hall before all the ladies of Ultonia." 



Isf breth ruc Curiif doib iar suid/«, in cdMTaíhmÍr 
do Coinculainn ocus lathus gaile Góedel uile, ocus 
tús día mnái ría mnaib \}\ad uile hi tech n-óil, ocus 
dobírt sechí cwmala di ór ocus airge/ dó illúag in 
gnima óenaidchi dodrigni. 5 

90. Celebrait iar suidi« do Choinruí ocus dollotar 
co n-dessetár [in] Emain Macha a triúr ria n-deód lái. 
Tráth tánic dóib iar suidí« co roind ocus dáil, rogabsat 
na rannaire in C3UYa(hmír cona íodai di lind riasind 
roind, corrabi ocaib íor leth. " Is derb lind tra," or 10 
DubíhacA Dóelteuga, "nf íil imchosnam lib innocht 
immá cauraíhm/r. Rolámair brethugud dúib intf 
ráncaibair." Asbertatar in fianlach aile fri Coincu- 
lainn iar suidiu, ní thardad in auiaíhmír do neoch 
dfb sech a chéli. Mád in rabrethaigestar immorro 15 
Cúruí dóib a triúr, ní ardamair ní de eier do Choin- 
culainn, o rancafar Errwíw Maca. Asbert Cúculainn 
la sodain, nárbu santach fair ca.nralhmír do chosnam 
et^r, ío bfth nárbu mó a solod donti día tibíí^ha hé 
oldás a dolod. O sin nf rorannad cauratómfr and, 20 
co tánic cennach ind rúanada i n-Emai'w ^acha. 

' iar sodain, Eg. ^ iiiie om., Eg. 

* dombert, Eg. ^ dorindi, Eg. 

' co ndecolnr Eomaí'n J/íií-Aii, Z,; co feoaturan Em. Machae, 
Eg; co n-demetár, LU (the blunder due to copying from a faded 

° cona folug do lin» iarsan roind co roibe ocaib for leith, Eg. 
'^ Ímman cur. Ro lamair bur 'ía-\iretka%ud inti rangabair. 
Ismbfrtatar, Eg. '* do nech sech a ceile, Eg. 

" Mad an ro brelhaigestaí- \xamorro Curui doib a triur ni 
ardamair (ardamad ?) ni de do C. o rangatar 'Exaain Machíe, Eg. 
" Asmbert, Eg; nirbo sant- (foid ?) fair Qntadmir do chosnam 
iti'r fo bith nir bo, Eg. '" tibairthíei, Eg. 

^ Cenach in ruanada ind sis, Egj cennadh an nianado, Ed. 


And seven cutnals ' of gold and oí silver he gave him 
in reward íor his one night's performance. 

§ 90. They straightway bade Curoi farewell and 
kept on tiU they gat seated in Emain ere the day 
closed. When the spencers came to deal and to divide, 
they took the Champion's Portion with its share of 
ale out of the distribufion that they might have it 
apart. " Sooth, sure are we," quoth Duach of the 
Chafer Tongue, "ye thinlt not to-night oí contending 
as to the Champion's Portion ? The man ye sought 
out mayhap has undertaken your adjudging." Where- 
upon quoth the other folk to Cuchulainn : " The 
Champion's Portion was not assigned to one of you 
in preference to the other. As to Curoi's judgment 
also upon those three, not a whit did he concede to 
Cuchulainn upon their arriving at Emain," Cuchu- 
lainn then declared he by no means coveted the 
ig of it. For the loss thence resulting to the 
nner would be on a par with the profit got from ít. 
The championship was therefore not fully assigned 
until the advent of the Champion's Covenant in 

* Pí ctanal had the value of three cows. 


Cennacb ind Ruanada inso. 

91. Fect n-and do \}\taib i n-Emiií« Macha iar scts 
óenaig ocus cluchi dolluid Conchohur ocus Fergus 
Míic Róig ocus mathi \J\ad ol chena asin cluchemaig 
ammuig, co n-deselar thall isin Criebrúaid Concho- 
b»í>. Ní rabi Cuculainn and na Conall Cernack na e 
LoegfliVí GúaeíacA ind aidchi sin. Batár Ímmorrv 
formna lath n-gaile fer n-Uloí/ ol chena. Amai ro- 
bátar and trath nóna deód lái, co n-accaíar bachlach 
mór forgrainne chucu isa tech. Indar leó, ní rabi la 
Ultu láth gaile rosassad leth méite fair. Bá úathmar 1 
ocus bá granni a innas in bachlaig. SenchodaJ frfa 
chnes ocus brat dub lachtna imbi, ocus dos bih mór 
fair, méit gamlfas hi tallat iric/izit n-gamna, Súili 
cichurda budi inna cind, méit chore rodaim cechfar 
de na dá sula sin fria chend anechtair. Remithir dóit ] 
láma neich aile cach mér día méraib. Cepp ina láim 
chH irraibe ere Jíc/uí cuinge do damaib. Biáil ina 
láim deis i n-deochatár tri Qoecait bruthdamna, búi 
feidm chuinge sesrige Ína samthaig, nothescbad finna 
fri gaith ar altnidecht. j 

92. Dolluid fond ecosc sin, corrabi inna sessom i 

' fect n-ann, Lj fecht n-aen di, Ed. 

* condessii-jí^j-condesitar, frf/ archenaasancluichiniuigh,Z„ 

* rauhi, Ed. ° an aduid sin, L; adhaich, Ed. 
' and ol cenai, Eg. 

* confacatar, Eg; deog, L. 

* Arindar leo ni raba do Ul lat n-gaile ro so\ged le . . Eg; 
ar indar leo ni raibi di UHta/í lathngaili, L; ar indar leo nimbuie, 
Ed " Sencodal, Egj indas ind ocliii^, 

" mett n-gaimlies a tallait trichae n-gaimen, Eg. 

" fri qiond aneachtar, Eg; om. de L; Ed. Remithir doid 
laime, Eg. " cep. ina laim cli ina raibe ere fichid cuiggi 

biail, Eg; oili cech mer diau meruib, L; remigt/r, Ed. 

'* an dechatar tricha bruithemna. Bai feidwi feisrige ina 
samtaig, Eg; a ndeocatar VII. bnithdamna. 

'* nothescbad to ahnidecht om., Eg; L; Ed. 

" a m-bun na gabla, F.g; fon eccusc sin co mboi fo bun na 
gablu ronb ui a cinn na tcní//; ina tsesomh, L. 


The Champion's Covenant, 

§ 91. Once upon a time as the Ultonians were in 
Emain, fatigued after the gathering and the games, 
Conchobar and Fergus mac Roig, with Ultonia's 
nobles as well, proceeded from the sporting field 
outside and gat seated in the Royal Court (lit. Red 
Branch) of Conchobar. Neither Cuchulainn nor 
Conall ttie Victorioua nor Loigaire the Triumphant 
were there that night. But the hosts of Ultonia's 
valiant heroes were there. As they were seated, Ít 
being evenfide, and the day drawing towards the 
close, they saw a big uncouth fellow of exceeding 
ugliness drawing nigh them into the hall. To them 
it seemed as if none of the Ultonians would reach 
half his height. Horrible and ugly was the carle's 
guise. Next his skin he wore an old hide with a dark 
dun mantle around him, and over him a great spread- 
ing club-tree (branch) the size of a winter-shed, under 
which thirty bu]locks could hnd shelter. Ravenous 
yelIow eyes he had, protruding from his head, each 
of the twain the size of an ox-vat. Each finger as 
thick as another person's wrist. In his left hand a 
stock, a burden for twenty yoke oí oxen. In^'is, right 
hand an axe weighing thrice fifty glowing raolten 
masses [of metal]. Its handle would require a plough- 
team {a yoke of six) to move it. Its sharpness such 
that it would lop off hairs, the win4 blowing them 
against its edge. '"-i^ 

§ 92. In that guise he went and stood by the 



m-bun na gabla robói hi ciund tened. " In cutmce 
in taige duit ale" or Dubíkac/i Dóeltengad írisin m- 
bachlach, "in tan nád íagbai inad aile and, acht beiih 
i-m-bun na gab/./, mawid caindieóracht in tige as áil 
duit do chosnam, acht namá bid mó bas loscud don - 
tig oldás bas suillse don tegluch." "Cid hé mo dán 
dtino, bes cotraidfid^r cacha bé dim airddi, co m-bad 
coitcetin a suiUsi don tegluch ocus conná bad loscud 
don tig. 

93- Acht namá," or se " ni hé mo dan do gr^, atát 
dána lim chena. Aní día tudchad cuingid immorro," 
ol se, " nocon íúar i n-Erind nach i n-Alpain nach i 
n-Eoroip n/ic/t i n-AíTraic nac/t i n-Assia co G;-ícia 
ocus Scithia ocus Insi Orc ocus Colomna-Ercoil ocus 
Tor m-Bregoind ocus Insi Gafd nech uo chomollad 
fir fer frim imbi. Uair roucsaid-se for n-UltiiV' or se 
"do slúagaib na t(ri sin ule ar grai// ocus greit ocus 
gaisced, ar airechas ocus uaill ocus ordan, ar fírinne 
ocus íéle ocus febas, fagabar uaib óenfer chomallas 
frim-sa in ceist ímmátú." 

94. "NÍ cóir ém enech cóicid do brith" or Fergus 

' In cuimci an tighi, L; Iq cuimge in tige duit ale (with a 
under the í), E^; imchuimciu, £d; a g-cinn na teinig, E^. 

^ Dubtach dfeJtenga Ín tan nach fogbaid, Eg; an tan nad 
foghba inad n-aili n-ann, L. 

^ Jn LU afier aiie and a point, and then afier don tegluch ; 
munad caiBleoraíA/, Eg; is aii, Eg. 

' nama a b — moani bus loscad don tig oltas vus soillsi don 
tegliícA 7 comad loscad don tig-, L; moam, Ed. 

* Índas bíit soilisi don teglach uile, Eg; CÍd e mo dan oi se 
cotmidfitliír cachambe do airdi, Eg. 

' cowmartte, Ed ' coitcen/(, Ed 

" An ni dia tudchíii/ chuiflce, Eg; Inni dia tudhcuid, L; 
nocan fhuar, L. " indsib horc, Eg. 

" ocus co tor m-bregaind, Eg; ínsi (?) gaith, Eg; no chomall- 
fad, Eg; nocomaildffrf, L; «ocowallnarf, Ed 

'^ ronuccsaitsiu inéur n-U!ltaiph, Ed, 

aiie, Eg; 

r grain, Eg; grai, Íi7 (with the sign 
for A above the contraction for gra). 

" ocus airechus ar uaiU ocus ar ordan ocus firinne ar feile ocus 

s febas, Eg; ar feli 7 Índracus 7 febus, £.. 
" comaillfes breith- frimb in ceist irama tu., Eg. 



fork-beatn beside the fire. " Is the hall lacking in 
room for you," quoth Duach of the Chafer Tongue 
to the uncouth clodhopper, " that ye find no other 
place than by the fork-beam, unless ye wish to be 
domestic luminary ? — only sooner wiU a blaze be to 
the house than brightness to the household." "What 
property soever may be mine, sooth ye wÍU agree, no 
matter how big 1 am, that the household as a whole 
will be enlightened, while the hall will not be burnt. 

§ 93- " That, however, is not ray sole function ; 
I have others as well. But neither in Erin nor in 
Alba nor in Europe nor in Africa nor in Asia, in- 
cluding Greece, Scythia, the Isles of Gades, the Pillars 
of Hercules, and Bregon's Tower (Brigantium), have 
I found the quest on which I have come, nor a man , 
to do me fairplay regarding it. Since ye Ultonians 
have excelled all the folks of those lands in strength, 
prowess, valour ; in rank, magnanimity, dignity ; Ín 
truth, generosity and worth, get ye one among you 
to give me the boon I crave." 

§ 94. " In sooth it is not just that the honour of a 
province be carried off," quoth Fergus mac Róich, 
"because of one man who íails in keeping his word 
of honour. Death, certainly, is not a whit nearer to 
him than to you." "Not that I shun it," quoth he. 
" Make thy quest known to us then," quoth Fergus 
mac Roich. " If but fairplay be vouchsafed me, I 
will tell it." " It is right also to give fairplay," quoth 


mac Róich "arái óenfir dothesbaid dlb oc denam 
anenig, ocus bes nipe nessu éc do suidi'/í oldás dait- 
siu." "Nf oc a iragabail sin da«p atúsa" ol se. "Fin- 
namár dawo do cheist" ol Fergus mac Róig. "Acht 
cordamthar íír fer dam " ol se "atb/r." " Is cóir fír 5 
fer do chomollod 'immonv" or Sencha mac AÍW/a, 
"ar nf íír íer do slúag mór muintf^da brisiud for 
óenfer n-anaichnid etorro, ocus bád dóig lind dano," 
ol Sencha, "mád cos trath-sa fogebthá óenfer, dot- 
dingbad-su sunna." " Facbaim Concobar fri láim," 10 
ol se, " dáig a rige, ocus fácbaim Fergus míic Róig, 
dáig a cotéchta, ocus cipé di'b " or se " laswis-étar 
cen mothá in dfs sin, tíét co tallur-sa a chend de 
innocht ocus co talla [sa mo cenn dfm-sa imbarach 
dadaig]." 15 

95. " Is áet^ph tra ebectsa," or DubtAocA, " ni fuil anw 
nech bis fiu laoc dith . . ut . . . a n-áegaid na deisi sin." 

1 arai . . íir do tesbíiirf dib oc denam, E^; díden an oinich, Z. 

' nib aessa.OT, E^. Ni oco umgabail a.tusa dano ol se ÍndnÍssin, 
£g; 7 bes nib nessamh ecc dossuidhe odas doid-se, L. 

' tra do cest, £^; Findamair tra do cheisd ol Fírcus maí 
Rí«cA iiirA/ coro damlhar fir fer daumh, Z,y go rodawtBr, £ií. 

' Acht co rodaiwther, E^j addaber, E^. 

' do chomallad friut ar Sencha m. Oil., E^^; comaJdnud, L. 

' muintmnail (?) bris, Eg-j nanaithgne, E^/ ar ni fir daum do 
sludg mor munid tr/omuil (?) prised for, i. 

^ ocus ba doig iind ar Sencha, Eg'; ba doicch, L. 

'" do dingba sun (?), Eg^; Fagbaim si don, Eg,- do dingbala hi 
sunda, Ed. 

'" fria laim, Eg; daich, L. 

'" Etcid be dib, £f ; lasíneit- oí-lasifteit-, ^l^; lasmasetir, i'rf/ 
ol se ris madseidir, Z,' cie be ol se, Eg. 

" cenmotha in diassin last co tallarsa a cend de anocht ocus 
co tallassa dimsa amarach dag, Eg; toet contallur-sau a ceíJin {sic 
Steme) de hinocht 7 cotalla mo cenn diomsa himbaruch d'adhuich, 
L; mo cenn dimsa ambuarach dadhaigh, Ed. 

" =aíechtsa. 


Sencha, son of AiliU, "for it beseemeth not a great 
ctannish íolk to breafc a mutual covenant over any 
unknown individual. To us too it seemeth likely, 
if at long last you find such a person, you will 
find here one worthy of you." " Conchobar I 
put aside," he quoth, " for sake of his sovranty, 
and Fergus mac Roich also on account of his Iike 
privilege. These two excepted, come whosoever of 
you that may venture, that I raay* cut off his head 
to-night, he mine to-morrow night." 

§ 95. " Sure then there is no warrior here," quoth 
Duach, " after these two." " By my troth there will 
be this moment," quoth Fat-Neck, son of Short Head, 
as he sprang on to the floor of the hall, The strength 
then of yon Fat-Neck was as the strength of a hundred 
warriors, each arm having the might of a hundred 
" centaurs." " Bend down, bachlach," quoth Fat- 
Neck, "that I may cut your head off to-night, you to 
cut off mine to-morrow night." "Were that my 
quest, I could have got it anywhere," quoth the bach- 
lach. " Let us act according to our covenant," he 
quoth, " I to cut off your head to-night, you to avenge 
it to-morrow night." "By my people's god," quoth 
Duach of the Chafer Tongue, " death is thus íor thee 

* Zfends ; tale continued by Edinburgh MS. In this clause 
LU, Eg, and Ed were at one. But there is no confusion in the 
lale, for according to § 76 the giant agrees to be beheaded first ; 
and this form of the giant's covenant is resumed in g 96, and con- 
tinued to the end. The giant in g 94 is dissemhling for the nonce. 
His real mind is seen from § 95 {+). 



" Bed cusindosa on ém," ar Munremar mac Gerrginfit 
Dosgena sithew for lar an tigAe lasodain. Ba he tra a 
calmataj an Muinremair hisen : neri zét caíJiniWed 
antt 7 neri zét cetluigA a ccer/í/ar a dao úghedh. 
" Tair sis a pachlaigh, go ttallar-sa do cenn dit anoír/i/ 5 
7 go ttallai-si ampuorwírA dimb-sa dadoig," ol Muin- 
remur. " Fogeauhai«n-si in gec mpaile anni sin, 
diam«d edh- hud al daí«," ol an baclacA. " Araaií 
rocinnsiwí" ol se, "as amlíi/í/dogniamwí: misi da gaod 
do cenH did-sa anoc/í/, tusa [dia gaod dim-sa] ampuo- 10 
racA da.daigk dia digAaÍl." "Toffgai rao ihuaiíh" ar 
'Dubthach Daoltengoi, "ni hadlaice duid eacc sam- 
\aidh, an ler muiríe anoí/i/ dia lil ambuaragA íart. 
Is ogott-sa t'oinar mata do cumachíai do maruAad gacA 
n-oidg/ie hocus do digail arnaparaucA." " In co;«airli 15 
ém or ataid-siu uile ass ingnad^ lip dogen-sa," ol an 
hachiach. Fonaisce íora, cele iarsuidiu a fir, oranga- 
baigtiur im cowallnad a dalai íris iarnaparag. 

96. Lasogin gepte Munremar an m-bial a laim an 
bachluí^. Sechi traig/ád iaram eiir di aul in biela, 20 
Adaig^ an bachlfli:^ iaram/i a bragaid dar an ccip. 
Domb«> Muinremor bem don biail tar a bradaid go 
rogab an cep fris anis go rotebisstwr a cen« gt^mpoi a 
mpun ina gabla, cowpa lan an teWach dia cru. Atfmíd 
suas la sodain 7 dcecmallai suas iarsuidiu 7 tegmallai 25 
a ceanw 7 a cep 7 a biail inda uct 7 as amWrf docuaid 
asÍK tigA, 7 s^^atach na fola asan medea, gwrlin an 
CríiepAruaid for gach \etk 7 ba mor a r\-iidhuath ar 
m^^hlzih ar sceoil adtaorfas doib. "Tonga 7 r." or 
DubthííM Doiltewgo, " dia tti an bacIdcA ambuarwíA 3° 

* leg. ái!. '^ leg. ia sodain, 

** leg. brágaid, et sic passim. 

*' co?«paIan guwpalan MS. 

** leg. atsralg, ^' leg. sreihach. 



no pleasant prospect should the man lcilled to-night 
attack thee on the morrow* It is given to you alone 
if you have the power, being killed night after night 
(lit. to be kiiled every night), to avenge Ít next day." 
"Triily I wiU carry out what you all as a body agree 
upon by way of coiJnsel,"f strange as it may seem to 
yoii," quoth the bachlach. He then píedged the other 
to keep his troth in this contention as to fuliilling his 
tryst on the morrow. 

§ 96. With that Fat-Neck took the axe from out 
of the bachlach's hand. Seven feet apart were its 
two angles. Then did the hachlach put his neck 
across the block. Fat-Neck dealt a blow across it 
with the axe till it stuck in the block underneath, 
cutting off the head tiU it lay by the base of the 
fork-beam, the house being filled with the blood. 
Straightway the bachlach rose, recovered himself, 
clasped his head, block and axe to his breast, thus 
made his exit írom the hall with blood streaming 
from his neck. It filled the Red Branch on every 
side. Great was the foik's horror, wondering at the 
marvel that had appeared to them. " By my people's 
god," quoth Duach of the Chafer Tongue, " if the 
bachlach, having been killed to-night, come back to- 
morrow, he will not leave a man aUve in Ultonia." 
The following night, however, he returned, and Fat- 
Neck shirked him. Then began the bachlach to urge 

* " You do not care for death, then, if the man whom you slay 
to-night clings to you on the morrow." Professor Kuno Meyer 
renders it thus, but I take this clause to be addressed 10 Fat- 
Neck, the foUowing to the giant. 

+ The natural plan would be to behead the giant the first 
night. It is on this the story lums ; it is what "seemelh strange." 
It thus becomes clear he is a supernatural being. 


iarna niai-pad 'mnoc/ií, nifuicfea íer m-peí/iaá la 
hullta." Tarmcuir tm a« mpatliiir/í iarnabarach 
dagníV 7 luid Muinnremar lor iwggauhal. Gabais an 
badíííA ag car a aí^ra ris. " Ni fir em do Muinnremaf 
giw comaMnad/i cennaig frim-sa." 5 

97. Bai dlo Laogaire Biíadac/t h'iíus i«d adaig 
si«. Cia dio caradaipA cosnwí a cauraí/w/> " or se, 
" V\aííA, firfaj ceandatr^ frim-sai 'mdoc/ií ? Cadi 

Búaí/ac/i?" or se. "Sunna," or háeg^aire. 
Fonaisc fon innw c/íína 7 ni tanaig Laogaire. Tig i 
dio iarnamarac 7 fonaisg ar Conall Cemat/t mur an 
cétnz, 7 ni tanaig amur dotoÍHg. 

98. Tic dio an, IIII. hadaig^ 7 ba lon« 7 bá uechell 
fair hisodaiff. Tarnecctar mna Ulflt/uile ind adaig si» 
do descin ind sgeoil iongnaith tawaic issin CroauA- i 

n (p. 71) Boi dowo CúcAulaiftdh\.i\\ss'mná3,áaig/i síh. 
Rosngap an mpachlní-// grisetA la sott//aind. Rosgaith 
ptír n-gal 7 uur n-gaÍsgeí/A, a Ullti," or se. " Mor 
menma har cc«^íid impa CMrat//mir," ar se, "7 nittad 
tuoWw^ a cosnewa. Caiti in siartha clao«tr«ad ucad," 2 
ol ce " frisanapar Cucu\aind, im pa íerr a pWathar 
olttas an iianWg naelt." "Ni hadlaig daw cenwagh 
f^'t ití>/' ol C\xc/tu\aind. "Doig lium, a cuil trwad, 
ar mór attadar ecc." Toscenw Cúc/iulaind cuice la 
sodoi«. Adaig sithi beimm ndo do?í piail co roben a 2 
cf«n fri cletAi na Croipírííí/íi'if, gu rwjcrtíilh an deoch 
n-uile. Gapdi Ctic/iulain a Cí«n dofr/'tisi 7 áomrtíoeir 
buille nde ndon« Ímbialach conndema sligrich de. 
Atfraig suas iarsuithiu. 

99. Iarnapuaraí:/í a mpatt«r UoIa/V o[c] czvmcomet : 
Conqlrtiwúí ind regad ior imgapu// an patlai^ 

° lcg. Craobbrú 

" leg. roscáich. 
^ leg. teach. 

=> leg. se. 
'^ leg, atsraig 



his pact with Fat-Neck. "Sooth it is not right for 
Fat-Neck not to fuliil his covenant with tne." 

§ 97- That night, however, Loigaire the Trium- 
phant was present. "Who of the warriors that con- 
test Ultonia's Champion's Portion will carry out a 
covenant to-night with me ? Where is Loigaire the 
Triumphant ? " quoth he. " Here," said Loigaire. 
He pledged him too, yet Loigaire kept not his tryst. 
The bachlach returned on the morrow and similarly 
pledged Conall Cernach, who came not as he had 

§ 98. The íourth night the bachlach returned, and 
íierce and furious was he. Ali the ladies of Ultonia 
carae that night to see the strange marvel that had 
corae into the Red Branch. That night Cuchulainn 
was there also, Then the fellow began to upbraid 
them. "Ye men of Ultonia, your valour and your 
prowess are gone. Your warriors greatly covet the 
Champion's Portion, yet are unable to contest it. 
Where is yon poor mad wight that is hight Cuchu- 
lainn ? Fain would I know if his word be better than 
the others'," " No covenant do I desire with you," 
quoth Cuchulainn. "Likelyis that, you wretched fly*; 
greatly thou dost fear to die." Whereupon Cuchulainn 
sprang towards hira and deait him a blow with the 
axe, hurling his head to the top rafter of the Red 
Branch tiU the whoie hail shook. Cuchulainn again 
caught up the head and gave it a blow with the axe 
and smashed it. Thereafter the bachlach rose up. 

§ 99. On the morrow the Ultonians were watching 
Cuchulainn to see whether he would shirk the bachlach 
as the other heroes had done. As Cuchulainn was 

'*' Cuil, " fly " canveys a pun upon Cuchulainii's name Incapable 
of being reproduced. 



amni/ docodwr an liallíK-^ naill. Otícondcadur \J\aid 
ira aurnuide an baclíi/^ do Coincculaind rosgapA 
miíri go mor 7 ba terf/o maruhcaoindi tid dorddsact 
íoir 7 robíi cemin leo rapatne fod a hsaoga;/ ack( gu 
ttisad an pacIdirA. Comá andsin ampert Conchobur íri 
Qoincualfliwfií tair«j naire: "Tar mo sciath 7 tar mo 
cloidiwi, ni ragA go racomallnar mo pmdir írisin m- 
bacAliTcA, uair ata ecc ar mo Ce«n 7 as fcrr limp ecc 
cow/m iflchdií." 

100. Ammbadiír and iar«?« deugA loi coriÍ3.cadur 
an mpacloíí qgtf. " Cadi CácJtulaind zúel" ar ce. 
"Atu a sonda immorro," hur Ctichulaind. " Is issil o 
rad aLtíochí, a trwadan," or se, "as mor attaidir-si ecc. 
Gib mor ataigthí/- ecc, ni imgapfzi'/ anattruiglaj." To- 
teit Cúchulaind cuge iarsuidiu 7 rigid a pradoid darsan 
ccepp. Boi do meat an cipp go nach ruacht a braidi 
gid gonuiciu a let. " Rig uaid do pralait, a tríígoin,' 
ol an bacliJcA. " Is confere dombíre foí-m," or Cuccw- 
laind, "d[éna?] xao xasxhad giluath. Nimba coinpfí« 
em tucius fort arfr," or se. "Toi«gtea em," ar Ctichu- 
laind, "dia m-be og mu coí/feri pidam sitigthir coir 
uasatt." " Ni fedaiwí t'airrlfiii " [ol an] baclach, 
"mett an cipp \íocus gairdi do prdtad 7 gairdi do 

lOi. Rosini CííirAa/iwW arsuidiu an« m-bmduid gu 
n-dechsaí/ fírtraig íe/-ocloic \dir gach da assnoi do 7 
rosiwí't a prtithoid go n-dechaid tar an ccepp don oile 
taiph. Tocpaidh an mbachlíít:// an m-bial suas gc 
ruacAí clethi na domo. Trostt inna sencodla row/ra- 
baoi umon m-bachldcA ocwjtrfstt mbielao 7 neri in da 
lamAa doddnuarguib bad mett fuamow/ íidbuidiu 

* leg. demin. 
" leg, atáigir-si 

* robad hé ? 
° leg. go luath. 

" leg. se. 

^' leg. sithidir. 


awaiting the bachlach, thev saw that great dejection 
seizecl him. It had been fitting had they sung his 
dirge. They felt sure his life would last only till 
the bachlach came. Then quoth Cuchulainn with 
shame to Conchobar* ; "Thou shall not go until my 
pledge to the bachlach is fulfiUed; for deaih awaits 
me, and I would rather have death with honour." 

§ 100. They were there as the day was closing 
when they saw the bachlach approaching. "Where 
is Cuchulainn ?" he quoth. " Here am 1," he answered. 
" Vou're dull of speech to-night, unhappy one ; 
greatly you fear to die. Yet, though great your fear, 
death you have not shirked." Thereafter Cuchulainn 
went up to hira and stretched his neck across the 
bloclc, which was cf such size that his neck reached 
but half-way. "Stretchout your neck, you wretch," 
the bachlach quoth. "You keep me in torment," 
quoth Cuchulainn. " Despatch me quickly ; last night, 
by my troth, I tormented you not. Verily I swear 
if you torment me, I shall make myself as long as 
a crane above you," " I cannot slay you," quoth 
the bachlach, "what with the size of the block and 
the shortness of your neck and of your side" {sid). 

§ lOi. Then Cuchulainn stretched out his neck so 
that a warrior's íull-grown foot would have fitted 
between any two oí his ribs ; his neck he distended 
till it reached the other side of the block. The bach- 
lach raised his axe till it reached the roof-tree of the 
hall. The creaking of the old hide that was about 
the feilow and the crashing of the axe — both his 
arms being raised aloft with all his might — were as 
the loud noise of a wood tempest-tossed in a night 

* According to the textual jeadtng, it is Conchobar that 
addresses Cuchulaiim. I have altered tbe translation to suit the 
conlext. The scribe is inaccurate. 



fortregAe a n-oidAce gaoithi. Tairnicí sis doridisiu 
coma co . ■ . irig fn'aa pmdhut 7 a cul reme. Mati 
Ur Ti-\J\adÁ uili oc a n-decsin innus siw. 

102. " Attfraid suas, a CiUhulaind . . [p. 72] . . sbies 
do lataip^ gaoile uíer n-\J\ad nó 'E.Tenn heíli ar a men- 5 
maiit heih im coipeis írii do g/íoil na gaisgííf no firinde. 
Rige laech n-Eire»« áuit 0« tmtso 7 i« curadmir gew 

choSTíum s dod mnoi ria mnaim \2\ad dogm 

a tteach n-oil 7 día," ar se, " cep ce nosda ceanai friut 
on trat^sa. Tonga a toingti mo ihuaíh, bid se fod 10 

a hsoegoil pí iaramh an patWA 7 as e Curui 

moc Daire dodeac/íOÍgA issin i'mchi sin do comaWad 
na bretre rodnuc do Comculaind. Oasin ttra ni 
rocosnamíií/:^ ra Coincuiaind an curaí/mir 7 it desin ata 
CauTad?nir n-Eamna dogress 7 an Briatjírcdth B//an 15 
\3\ad 7 Ceandac an Ruanado ind-Eamuin Maca 7 
Toteiw n-01<3rfdo CAruachnaib Aiea. Finitt. 

' perhaps, foiltrighe. 
* leg. atsraig ; perhaps atrai a 
urge psalterium, Ml. Ja6'= 3. 
' leg. mnáib. 
'^ leg. tóchim. 

Note atrá a saltair^/. 


of storm, Down Ít came then . . . on his neck, its 

blunt side below, — a!l the nobles of Ultonia gazing 
upon them. 

§ 102. "O Cuchulainn, arise ! , . . Of the warriors 
of Ultonia and Erin, no matter fheir mettle, none is 
found to be compared with thee in valour, bravery, 
and truthfulness. The sovranty of the heroes of Erin 
to thee from this hour forth and the Champion's 
Portion undisputed, and to thy lady the precedence 
alway of the ladies of Ultonia in the Mead Hail, And 
whosoever shall lay wager against thee from now, 
as my folks swear I swear, while on life he will be in 
[sore scathe]." Then the bachlach vanished, It was 
Curoi mac Dairi who in that guise had come to fulfil 
the promise he had given to Cuchulainn. 

And thus henceforth the Champion's Portion of Emain 

And thé Ulster Women's War of Words 

And the Champion's Wager in Emain 

A nd the Hosting of the Ultonians 

To Cruachan. 



AilÍU, ihe Irish equivalent of the Wdsh eHyll, "an elf or 
demon " — " Hib. LecL," p. 13S. Aided Ailella ocus Conaill Cemaig 
is given in Edin. Gael. MS. k1. Cf. D'Arbois de JubainviIIe's 
" Catalogue de la Littérature Epique de rirlande," p. 13. 

Amorgene, " wonderful-birth," " wonderfui child" — " Hib. 
Lect.," p. 570°. He was the seer of the sons of Mile on their 
entering Ireland. The story of hischildhood("HÍb. Lect.,"p. 563) 
reminds one of that of Taliessin, which literally means "strong 
EssÍn," which latter iiiay be cognate with Ossin, Ossian. In a 
Breton Chartulary the name is written with ^g: Talgessin, where 
Talg- is cognate with Irish tailc, "strong," 

Blatlmat seems to be derived from bláíh, " bloom " ; cf. Cym. 
Blodeuedd, from blodeu, "iiowers."— " Hib. Lect.," p. 473. The 
elopement of Blathnat, daughter of PaJl-son-of-Fidhach, with 
Cuchulainn is meniioned in O'C.'s MSS. Mat., p 590, where it is 
presumed to be the tale lcnown as the " Tragical Deaih of Curoi 
mac Daire," given in Kealing — see stib Falga. 

Bnan : the "Rennes Dindsenchus" Ís as follows : " Buan, 
daughter of Samaera, gave her heart to Cuchulainn when the 
champions Loigaire Buadach, Conall Cemach, and Cuchulainn 
went to contend for the Champion's Portion. For the award they 
fared to Emain, and thence they were sent to AiliU and Meve. 
Ailill (refusing to arhitrate) sent them lo Assaroe, to Samaera, 
and he adjudged the Champion's Portion to CuchulaÍnn. Then 
Conall and his charioteer, Rathen, went over Snam Rathin, and 
there Ralhen was drowned, whence Snám Rathin (Rathen's 
swimming-place). Then Buan foUowed Cuchulainn on his chariot's 
track as far as yon rock, and she lept an awful leap after (striking 
hcr head against ihe rock), and thereof she died. Whence Buan's 
Farm (Luid dano Buan indlaid ConculaÍnn for fuiUicht a carpait 
conice Ín n-all ucat, coro ling leim n-uathmar 'mon n-all inadíaid, 
co n-apad de. Unde Fích mBuana)" — RC. 16, 57. This story 
is found also in LL. i66'>2i. 

Cathbath, the Druid of Conchobar's court ; he prophesied of 


Deirdrc at her birth, aod weatcened the children of Usnech by his 
spells. According to the earliest accounts, he was the real father 
of Conchobar. His son Geanain was also a Dniid. The char- 
acter of the Gaelic Druids inay be inferred to some extent from 
their miracles, «hich may bc described " as mostly atmospheríc, 
consisting in such feats as bringing on a heavy snow, palpable 
darkness, or a great storm, such as the ones by means of which a 
Druid tiied to effect ihe shipwreck of St. Columba on Loch Ness." 
— " Hib. Lect.," p. 324. 

Oeltcbar mac Utbechair •■ After him is named Dun Celtchair, 
a very large fort near the town of Downpalrick. His iwo sons 
wcre Glas and Menn : glas agus Meann .i. dhá mhac Uilhechair. — 
Egcíton MS. p. 109 (Brit. Museum). He was famed for his spear 
(luin Cheltchair). C/. LU. 95 ^ 6-10 ; see O'Curr^, ii. p. 325; 
iii. [48. Aided Celtchuir maic Uitkeckuir is found in Edinburgh 
Gaelic MS. xl., and in LL. 118*-. 

06t miu: Magach : His death tale is in Edin. Gael. MS. xl. ; 
cf. Reating. 

Conall Oernach : Certi, i.t. victory, whence is named Conall 
Cemac/i, i.e. "thc Victorious." — "Covi'.iac," p. 37. Conall is 
cognate with Cymric Cynwal, from Kuno-valo-s " high (and) 
mighty one." A stone near Peniance, Comwall, has the form 
CVNOVALL In Conall we have "anolher personification of the 
sun ; for he was the son of the sister of Cuchulainn's mother, and 
her name, Findchoem, meaning white and loveiy, would seem to 
point to her as a dawn or gloaming goddess." — "Hib. Lect.," 
p. 539. For his achievements see Hull's "Cuchulainn Saga," sub 
indcJt ; aiso Hyde; and Cóir Anmann in " Ir. Texte," iii. p. 395. 

Conchobar mac Nessa: "High-Helper" ; in point of form 
still current as Conor, O'Conor. The Conor of ihe saga was son 
of the Draid Cathbad (Cathbath), who, on an expedition with 
thrice nine men, killed Nessa's twelve guardians. Aessa is a 
woman's name in gen. case. "Conchobar," says 0'Flaherty 
(0gygia, Part UL chap. xiviii.), "had over twenty-one sons, 
whose descendants are all exlinct." Through the stratagem of 
his niother he displaced Fergus-mac-Rdig, the former king. 
According to Borlase (p. 817°), Conchobar was "the name of the 
eponymous of a tribe called Conchuburnenses in the Book of 
Armagh and Conchubairne by Mac Firbis." The prefix can in 
this name, and also in Conall, is cognate wiih Gaulish cuno, Cymric 
citia, "altitudo," and in words like con-car, con-guas ; some would 
add 5uch Germanic names as Huno, Hiinwald.— US., p. 84. The 
name has been etymologised " high-foaming," while /Vessa has 



been connected with Loch A'ess (Gaelic, JVt's) from nedsa, netsn ; 
Sfcr. nadi, "river"; Nessonis, a !ake in Thessa]y ; Ger. neízen, 
"to wet." — Mackay's "Urquhart and Glenmoriston," p. 575. This 
is unUke1y, as the O. Ir. aiit-nas (§ 84 of FB) = "rot-soft," -nas 
being cognate with German nass, " wet," &c., and with Greck 
vortpás " wet, damp, moist." 

Ou-chnlainii, " Hound of Culann." Culann, the name of 
Conchobar's smith, Stokes suggesls, is cognate with Cr. «dXXdi, 
"crippled, halt"— RC. 6, 36S. This reminds oneof Vulcan, This 
method of forming names is non-Aryan and hetokens non-Gaelic 
influence ; c/. Semitic Obed-Edom, " servant of the god Edom," &c. 

Cnroi, a man's name, son of Aenghus, tord of Cinel-Laeghaire, 
see AFM. sub 793. Conroy is slill an Irish surname. The gen. 
conu-ri\% found on an old Ogam in Kerry, which is what corre- 
sponds to the Anglo-Irish Caher Conree. (a) Aided Conroi= 
Aithed Btatnaite, ingine Puill, maic Fidaig^ Orgain Cat/irach 
CoHroi=Bas Conrúi.—MSS. 14° C, (?) TCD. J/. 2, 16, col. ?76- 
780 ; 16° c. Eg. (lírit. Mus.), 88, p. 9 ; 1629, Keating ; CConor's 
trans., 100-102; 0'Mahony, 282-284; Halidaj', 398-405. C/. 
poem by Cinaed ua Artacain, died 975, LL, p. 31, col. 3, Une 6. 
(á) Amra Conroi, 16° c, TCD. H. 3, 18, 49-58; also found as 
Appendix to Eg. 88. (c) Bás Conrói mic Dóiri, 22 G. i\, in Roy, 
Ir. Acad. (d) Secht catha in cathrach Conrui v. Cath. Muige 
Rath. ed. O'Donovan, 212 ; a lost tale. (e) Eiegy of Conroi in 
Book of Taliessin, given Ín Skene's " Four Ancient Books of 
Wales" ; also Ín his Additional Notes to the Book of the Dean 
of LÍsmore ; furlher, and better, by Rhjs, and cited elsewhere. 

CuBcraid Mend Macha : C. the Dumb of Macha. " This was 
a custom of Ihe L'laid. Every young son of theirs who took arms 
used to enter ihe province of Connaught on a foray or to seek to 
slay a human being. So once upon a time Cuscraid, son of 
Conchobar, entered the province of Connaught. A cry is raised 
around him. Then Cet answered him. Cel wounded Cuscraid 
through his mouth, and shore ofT the point of his tongue, so that 
he was dumb {mend) thereafter." — " Ir. Texte," iii. 2 Heft, p. 405. 

Dáre : The name occurs in a Pembrokeshire inscription, 
" Tunccetare uxsor Daari," where the first word reminds one of 
Cym. tyngked, " fate," and might perhaps be rendered " fortunala " 
— Stokes, c/s. Gr. (jroi-atio-)íiipiot. 

Dubthach Doel nia4 : The"Book of Lecan" says his lands 
were, after his deaih, inundated by Lough Neagh. Anglicised 
" Duffie," " Duffach." For further accounts see fíuli. 

Echbel, fíi. " horse-mouth." His sister Uinnside was Curoi's 
mother. " He lived in Alban, and bis cows used to come to gra^e 


in Dalriada, on a headtand now called Island Mag'ee, in Antrím, 
where they were appropríated by Cuchulainn anii his men, from 
whom [hey were then stolen by Curoi." — "Hib. Lect.,"' p. 477, 
where Rh^s talces ii as a Gaelic version of the story of Cacus 
stealing from Hercalcs some of thc heifers he had talcen from 

Emer ; This was not an uncommon female name in Ireland ; 
two princesses so called are spoUen of in the V.T. In the High- 
lands to ihe present day her name survives as Ihe ideal of beauty ; 

1 gniomh r 

. h- Eimhir' áluinn, 
i mna Gréig'." 

see a stania Ín Carmichael's " Or íif.'jíi Ob," where it is applied. 
to one whose beauty resembled that of Emer, and whose indu5iry 
was comparable to thai of Penelope, both being incomparable. 
In anolher ballad she Ís refcrred to as Einhir áluinn an fhuUl 
bhuidh, " Emer the beautiful (one) oí the yellow hair." For a 
reference to the "Lay of the Heads" — Emer'slament on her dead 
husband — see sub Sualdain. 

Eogan mac Dartliacht (also Dtríhachí) -. " Eogan," anghcised 
"Ewen," cognate with Cymric 0-uien. " Durthacht" "is probabIy 
of the same origin as the reduplicaie domlhethaig, ' deperdidit,' 
so that mac Durlhacht would seem to have had much the samc 
meaning as . . . 'sonof Pcrdition or Destruction.'"— "Hib. Lect.," 
p. 142". He wasa typeof dartnessand treachery, andslew tbesons 
of Usnech. He was king of Farney. For other characteristics 
acc HuU. 

Fedelm Náicrlde : Various cxplanations of her name arc 
given in the " Cóir Anmann " (Fitness of Names) : " Fcdelm NSi- 
cruthach, ' nine-shaped,' i.e. nine shapes would come to her when- 
cver she was looUed at. Or A'úa-chrothach, ' fresli-formed,' i.e. 
because of her beau(y a fresh form upon her was d)splayed to 
every one. Or Súa-chraidech, ' fresh-hearted ' was she because of 
her friendliness." — " Ir. Texte," iii. 2 Heft, p. 397. Another per- 
sonage of same name but with a different epithet is found in BriL 
Museum, Harl., 5280, fol. 34* : " a short story of Cuchulainn and the 
lady Felira Foltcain, one of the water-nymphs of the rÍverBoyne," 

Fergus mac Eóig: King of Ulster, immediately preceding 
Conchobar mac Nessa, by whom he was dethroned. He afíer- 
wards passed into Connaught to AiliU and Méve. Fergus is 
cognate with Cymric Gurgust, Gwrwst, Grwst in Llan-rwsí. — 
US. p. 284. -gus, "choice." L. gustus; hence " hyper-select" 
The suffix is met with in Angus, " unique-choice." A Celtic 
parallel to the Greek Crontis. — "Hib. Lcct.," p. 646. "Róg"! 




was his mother's naine, otherwise styled " Roich, daughter of 
Eochaid, son of Dare . , , or . . Roch, daughter of Ruad, son of 
Derg Dath-fola" (Red-Blood-Hued), from ihe elf mounds. — "Ir. 
Texte," iii. 1 Heft, p. 407. Aided Fergus maic Roich is given in 
Edin. Gael. MS. xl. ; cf. Keating. 

Fiacha ocus Fiacbaig ; cf. Vipoig, Vipogeni ; Nepos Vepogeni 
Caledo (Colehester Brass Inscription). The Picts, adopting this 
name, treated Ihe ending en " as their own genitive termination, so 
that they next inferred Vepog, the Vipoig of the hst of Pictish 
kings." — Rhys. 

Fittdabair, "fair eyebrow." 

ForgaU Manach : also Monach, írom mon, " a trick " (Cormac). 

" Every featfiil one who performed a lrick 
Was monach in the Old GaeUc." 

— " Ir. Texte," iii. 2 Hefl, p. 373. 

Cognate is Cymric iayna-wg, "a courteous or poUte person." — 
" Hib. Lect.," p. 376- 

Furbaíde Ferbeim : Fer-benn, " ttian (of the) homs, " Juriaiiie 
A.furbadh, " excision " ; said to have been cut out from his mother's 
womb, and was afterwards called Diarmait, son of Conchobar. — 
" Ir. Texte," Íii. 2 Heft, p. 397, 

niand ; Seems same as tollan, another name for Oscar in the 
Fionn-Ossian-Saga. As to Illann, son of Fergus, see HuU. 

Imctiad : cf. " Ambigatus " for " Ambicatus," used by Livy 
where he speaks of ihe Celts. 

Imomain, a renowned hero of the UUonians, was named 
Ferdomun mac Imomain, MR., p. 85. Im is intensivc preRx, 
omun, cognate with Cym. ofn, Corn. crwn. 

Liath Macba : On the death of Cuchulainn, his charger, the 
Grey of Macha, galloped home to Emer with the sad news. He 
went round her thrice sun-wise and placed his head Ín her lap. 
Emer's lamentation on leaming of her husband's death is given 
in LL. 1 23", 20, " A Leith Macha mór n-essad," &:c. Cf. " Iliad," 
xvii, 487-490, where the steeds of Achilles are represented as 
weeping, though they seem to be regarded exempt from death 

Loeg the charioteer, now laogh, "catf," lii. "jumper, springer." 
Loegaire, " calf-tender," now Leary, 0'Leary. Aided Loegaire 
Buadaig'i^ in Edin. Gael, MS. xl. ; cf. Reating. 

Lugaid Riab n-derg, said to have been kil!ed by the Ihrec 
" Red-Heads," O'C's " Lectures," Appendix, p. 483 ; known also 
as Lugaid mac Conroi, and Lugaid, son of the Three Hounds ; 



cf. " HÍb. Lcct.," p, 472. Afier the seve; 
followed on Ihe murder of Conaire Mi 
King of Erin. 

U«Te {Medb), slain by her 
Conchobar tnac Nessa, on In 
Shannon. On the traditlonal 
ihere been found two i 
Rhf s reads ; " (The sione 01 
where ihe Ogmic speUing of the 
1898, pp. 231, 409. The name Medb 

years' interregnum whicb 
r he was chosen as High- 

*n sister's si 
Cloithrinn, : 
e of Queen 


I, Furbuidhe, : 

Lough Ree, Ín the 

[6ve's head-quarters 

of which Principal 

grave) of Fraech, son of Medb," 

Medw V. JRHAI for 


" Documenta de Sancio Patricio," pp. 78, 94. 95- Thc name haa 
been compared (US. pp. 208, 336) wiih ihe Celto-Iberian .1/íi/«- 
genus, a man's name ; with ihe Gall. Meduna, Medussa; with the 
Cymric, meddw, " ebrius," Ir. mid, Eng. meaJ., SansWrÍt, wiífdíií, 
"honey, sweet drink." Madhu is also ihe name of one of the 
Daitya3, a clan of demons. According to Rhís, she "belongs to 
the ambiguous goddesses of dawn and dusk. found allied at one 
time wiih light, and at another with datkness" ("Hib. Lect.," 
p. 444). Ii is noticeable in our tale that she is assoclated wiih 
"good, intoxiearing, excellent malt-beer." Mr. Borlase compares 
Medeu, the name of a healhen queen in Pomerania. According 
to the description oí her in the Táin,' she is "a beautifui, pale, 
long-faced woman with long fiowing goIden-yellow hair, having a 
crimson cloalc fastened with a brooeh of gold over her breast, a 
siraight ridged spear ílaming in her hand." With this one may 
compare Dion Cassiuson Boadicea: "She was of large siie, terrible 
of aspeet, savage of countenance, harsh of voice, with a profusion 
of flowing yel1ow hair which fell down to her hips, a large golden 
collar on hcr neclc, a variegated flowing vestment drawn close 
about her bosom, a thick mantle faaiened by a clasp or brooch, 
with a spear in her hand." Aided Medba Crúachan (thc Death 
Tale of Méve of Cruachan) is found in LL. 124, and in Edin. 
Gael. MS. xl., where Ít Ís told (hat "Cloihru administered the 
laws of Connaught in the isle of Clothru (Inis Clothrand) on 
Lough Rce. They say that Méve killed her sister Clothru, and 
out of her sides her child, Furbaide, son of Conchobar, was taken 
with the swords. Then MÉve seized the kingship of Connaught, 
and took Allill to rule by her side. And in !nis Clothrand she 
administercd the laws of Connaught. She was under a spcll to 
bathe every moming in a spring at the end of the island. One 
day Furbaide went to Inis Clothrand and lixed a pole on the 

' Pranounce wilh dental I, long a as in falher, n a9 in Col<^e. 


flagstone on which MÉve was wont to maliC her ablutions. He 
tied a rope to thc top of the pole, and the pole was as high as 
Méve, and he siretched the rope across Lough Ree from easl to 
wesi. Then he iook the rope home with him, and, when the 
yonths of Uisler were ai this piay, this was Furbaide's game ; 
he would stretch his rope between two poles and practised slinging 
between them, nor did he leave off until he hit the apple that was 
on the head of ihe pole. One day there was a great gathering of 
the men of Connaught and Ulster around Lough Ree, west and 
east. And Méve went to baChe early in the morning in the spring 
above the loch. ' What a beautiful figure yonder ! ' said every- 
body. 'Who is it?' aslced Furbaide. 'Thy mother's sister,' all 
said. He was then eating a piece of cheese. He did nol wait to 
pick up a stone. He put the cheese in his sling, and when MÉve's 
forehead was turned towards thera, he sent rhe piece and lodged 
il Ín her head. And so he killed her by one throw, and avenged 
his inother." — (Trans. by K. Meyer in Celtic Magazine, March 
1887, p. i\i. 1 have omitted the opening as unessenlial, and 
made one or two slight changes.) This " Mead-goddess " appears 
in Shakespeare as Mab^ Queen of the fairies. 

UÍDd ; gen. apparently of Menn, Menii. I would have ex- 
lended Che contraciion for this word into Mid/r, as 0'Curry and 
Rhjs have done, for in LU. 139" it is written Mid for Midfr, did 
I nol come across Ihe following stanía from LL. : 
"Roort blalhnai ingen mTd 
orgain ossar c[2] glind 
mtJr gnfm do mnai brath a fir 
dóig Ís frv'ss rodasmidir." 
Here the thyme needs Miná. Again, 0'Grady in Appendix to 
S. Gad. quoles from K. 5 as follows : " Conor [Mac Nessa's] 
daughter Blathnat was wife of Curui mac Daire ; so too was 
Blathrat, daughter of Menn, king of the men of Falga." 

Mimreiiiur mac Oerrgiim, one of the heroes who claimed the 
honour of dissecling the famous pig called Muc Dalho al a 
banquel given by a Leinster chieftain. After him is named Loch 
Muinreamhair, now Lough Ramor, near VÍrgÍnia, co. Cavan, on 
the borders of the co. Meath. In the Cóir Anmann his name is 
fnac Eirrcind; it is explained that Cét mac Magach cast a spear 
at hira and struclc him in the neck, which swelled so ihai it became 
thick, and thence his nickname ! 
KUB : Cym. Rh^s (f). 
Sadb Stllljair (§ 6) : Gaul. s^adu in Svadu genus, Svadu-riv ; 


Skr. svadu, "sweet" ; Gr. íáúc, "swect" ; L. suávis, "suave" ; 
Eng. svícel. Sulbair is cognate with Cyin. Hylafar, "eloquent." 

Snaldam. occurs in the Nennian genealogies, see Cymmrodor, 
ix. 178. His son Setanta may have been an historical personage 
who became " identified with the older character of a more 
mythical Cuchulainn." An early Cymric inscription has " Hovelt," 
but ÍI is doubtful if it may be connected ; c/. Howell. In the Boolc 
of the Dean of Lisraore's version of Emer's lament she says she is ; 

" Cowf v^^ howalte hayve na vil agga fein ar for= 
Cumhadh Mhic Shualtaimh shéimh 
Ni bhfeil aige féin air for." 

" A'mourning the son-of-Sualtam gracious 
— Thereof no knowIedge has he." ' 
[no notice takes he] 

The oldest form of " Emer's Lattient for Cuchula,inn " is given in 
I.L. 123", 'io. There is a modem Irish version of great beauty 
where, on recovering her husband's head, she is represented as 
" sucking Ín its blood and drinlting it " (" do ghabh ag sughadh a 
choda fola agus ag a h-ól"). This was to express affection. 
Deirdre al50 laps her husband's blood (Hyde, p. 352). It must 
have been the same feeling that prompted the wife of Gregor of 
Glenstrae, Perthshire, Ín her exquisitely touching lament for her 
husband, to express herself to like effect three centuries ago ; 

" Chuir iad a cheann air ploc daraich 
Agus dhoirt Íad fhuil mu lár 
Nan robh agam-s' an sin copan 
Dh' ólainn di mo shkth." 

Which I may translate quite literally : 

" They set his headon a block of oak, 
His blood lo the ground they let spitl, 
An had I then by me a cuach 
I had drained thsreof myfill.^' 

' The tcxt of the modern version of the " Lay of ihe Heads" in 
CamerQn's Seliguiic Celtica, i. 71, ha^ Shubhalt with [Mhic Shualtamh?} 
jn Ihe marein ; the lost clause is transliterated ; Ni hhfeil aige fán ax foir, 
which ia rendeted "Or is thete tespect shown for hím." Tbis is non- 
sense. " Cha n'eil for agam air"="I have no notion of it," is in collo- 
quial use in the Highlands ; cha do chuir e for duine^he did not 
nolice a man, he toolc note nf none. 


There are two or three other references to this custom in 
Highland songs. Spenser saw after an execution at Limerick 
the executed man's foster-mother "take up his head whilst he 
was being quartered, and suck up the blood that ran from it, 
saying that the earth was not worthy to drink it, and steep her 
face and breast with it, at the same time tearing her hair, and 
crying out and shrieking most terribly." 



Albft, now " Scotland." Some Highlanders who have learned 
nothing from modem geography use it for the whole ísland from 
Sutherland to the " French sea," holding that Alba Ís the Gaehc 
for Breatunn. Comiac (juí Mug-Eime) has also a curious use of 
it, c.g. " when great was the power of the Gael on Britain, they 
divided Alba belween them into districls, and each lcnew the 
residence of his friend, and not less did the Gael dwell on the 
easE side of the sea than in Scotica (Ireland), and their habitations 
and royal forts were built there." C/. Byron's use of Albion, 
which also in the Greek writers means Great Britain. So too 
Ihe Latin glossator on FÍacc's Hymn (in its present form eariy 
ninth century) at the words " ' Dofaid tar Elpa huile ' .i. dar sliab 
n- Elpa, ar robo ainm do inis Bretan ule oUim (recte, ohm) Alba, 
ut Beda dicit in principio suae historiae, ' Britania Ínsola (est) cui 
quondam nomen erat Alban,'" &c. — LH. i. gS. In other words, 
theangel brought Patrick across all Britain, so ihat "over Alpain" 
would be righily used, v'u., over Ihe mount of Elpa, for this Alba 
was once a name for the whole island of BrÍtain. Dr. Stokes 
derives the name from Albion, " white-land," cognate with L. albus, 
"white," Gr. óX^/iór, "while." dX^ír, XnJíoíc, Hesych., Umbr. 
alfu, Sabine, alpus, O.H.G. albiz. He thinks that in Gaulish 
there were two stems, alban- and albin-, whence the double name- 
forms AÍbanius — Altinus, Albaniani — Albiniani (now Halphen 
on the left bank of the Rhine). From the same root comes ihe 
name of the " Alps " in Switierland, Gaulish 'AXjiíis, from "AX^iit, 
where b through the influence of / becomes p. These mountains 
got their name from the white snows, as Festus' explains : " Alpes 
a candore nivium dicti sunt, qiii perpetuis fere nivibus albescunt." 

Cleitech Cerna, on the Boyne. 

Craeb Buad, now Creeveroe, name of a townland near the 

river Callan, not far from Emania. — MR. jiS". Conchobar had 

Ihree different houses, the Craeb Ruad, the Téiíe Brea, the Craeb 

' Qvioted Ln US., p. 2i. 




Derg: cf. O'C. ii. 332 ; LL. fol, lo&', i ff, 106*, 38 ff. The first 
was the Hostel of the Kings ; the second was set apart for the 
spears, shields, and swords, an armoiiry, Ín fact, where the 
weapons were piled to prevent mischief at the revels ; Ín the third 
were the skulls (of enemies slain) and other trophies. Craeb Ruad 
] have rendered Red Br.-inch, out of deference to custom, but I 
much prefer 10 anglicise it, Creeveroe, as ruad here means " lord, 
noble," and is different from ruad, " red." The Dagda in Cormac 
is called ruadrofhessa, i.e. "lord of great fcnowledg'e." 0'Curry 
felt that it meant Royal, which Dr. Hyde also allows (" Lit. Hist. of 
Ireland," p. 295), while out of concession to tradition he continues 
the use of ihe phrase " the Heroic or Red Branch Cycle." Craobh 
in the Highlands has three meanings now ; (1) a tree ; (3) a bead 
upon liquor ; {3) a stalíc (Uist). 

Crnachan : Ráith Cruachan, now Rathcroghan, between Bela- 
nagare and Elphin, co. Roscommon. For list of extant remains, 
see AFM. sub A.D. 1223. Some have identified the name with 
Cniachu or Cróchan, handmaid of Etain, who eloped with Mider 
— the side deity of the country round Bri Leith, co. Longford, east 
of Ardagh. The word is generally followed by Ai, which native 
story variously explains : (1) from ae, " liver" — O'C. ii. 11 ; 
(i) from Ai, the name of Enna Aignech's hound — RC. 15, 469 ; 
(3) from Aí, son of Allguba— RC. 15, 469. 

Cnnecli : cf. " Broccan's Hymn," I. 97 ; Ít seems to liave been 
near Ki!dare. 

'F*"a^i" Macha : The palace Ihere Ín which thirty-nlne of the 
Ultonian lcings resided, was said to have been built by Cimbaeth, 
309 E.C. It was destroyed by the Three Collas, the grandsons of 
Klng Cairbre Liffechalr, in the year 332 A.D. according to Tiger- 
nach. Its remains are stiU to be seen about two mlles lo the west 
of Armagh, and are, without a singje exception, the most extensive 
of their kind in all Ireland. It was described by Colgan as follows 
in 1647 : " Emania propé Ardmacham, nunc fossis latis, vestigiis 
murorum emlnentibus et ruderibus pristinum redolens splendorem." 
— Trias Thaum., p. 6, 71, MR. 213°. Macha has been variously 
associated in Iraditlon : (i) Macha, wife of Nemed, son of 
Agnoman, who died there ; it was sald to have been the twelfth 
plain cleared by Nemed-son-of-Agnoman, who bestowed It on his 
wlfe; (2) Macha, daughter of Aed the Red ; it was she who 
marked out Emaln ; {3) Maclia, wife of Crund-son-of-Agnoman, 
was buried there. Her story is rendered inlo English in I.G. 
p. 304. It is now known as Navan (cnoc na h- Eamlina) which, 
overloofcs the lands of the Craob Ruadh. " Around this hill, be- 


iwixt ihe base and the suminil, Ihcre is an elliptical fosse and 
moat, induding ii acres 3 rods and 36 perches, by which two 
smallcr ciicular mounds or forls (one on ihe top and the other on 
the sidc oí thc hill) are environed. These had probably been 
fonned lo protecl the royal residence." — Stuarl's "Hislory of 
Armagh," pp. 578-579 ; cf. Cormac sub EmaÍn. 

Érin, Hériu, gen. Hérenn, Érenn, fir hErend ; dat. i n-Érird. 
Olher texts show the h in gen., dat., acc Cym. Viverddon, 
Iiuerddun; Mid, Bret. Vutrdon. We are justified Ín holding this 
word 10 be cognate wiih Skr. pivarf (pivéria), swelling, fiill, 
exuberant, fai ; pivara, fal, large, broad ; Gr. Trifipa [í], fat, rich, 
prosperous, wealthy, plenliful ; Mount Pienis ín Thessaly ; iri{F)fpia, 
ihe seat of the Muses. The inilial h, kept in the Latinised loan- 
word Hibemia, points to an Indo-European inítial p, of whicb 
ibere are sevcral other examplcs. 

Eas Bliad, now Assaroe, the salmon-leap at Ballyshannon, 
ca Donegal. For stories as to the origin of the name, see RC. 
16, 32. One version takes the name from Ruad, son of líadurn, 
king of Erin ; another derives it from the Lady Ruad, who was 
drowned there. It is ímpossible to connecl it wiih the poaúioc of 
Ptolem^, as has been suggested. 

Falga : glossed inse Gall indiu, i.e. " the Hebrides Io-day." — 
LL. 169''. "Falga," says 0'Curry, "is the Isle of Man, IradÍ- 
tÍonally placed under Manannan, Íord of Ihe Happy Other- Worid." 
In the Bodley " Dindsenchus" (IB. vol. i. 213) the Land of Falga 
is a synonym for ihe Land of Promise. "It is possible," says 
Mr. Nuit, " thai these names date back to a period when the 
Goidels inhabited Britain, and when Man vi'3& par txcellence'Cb& 
Westem Isle, the honie of the lord of ihe Oiherworld." There is 
an inieresting story known as " Righ Innis Fhalga," current Ín 
Scotland, but unfortunalely 1 eiannot find ii ai present. A shoit 
rhapsody, entitled "Forbais Fer Falgae," exisls in Rawl. B,, 512, 
fol. iiS''. It purporu to be the invasion of the Isle of Man by 
Cuchulainn and the Men of Ulster. Of this I have myself made 
a transcript. There is another copy Ín Eg. 1782; anolher in 
Harleian, 5280 ; another in Eg. 88 ; for copies of the first Iwo I 
am indebied to Mr. O'Heeffe, for the lasi lo Miss E. HuIL Tbe 
Rawl. offers ihe best texl. The Ínteresting point Ís ihaX /er Falccae 
fer Faigae is glossed fer Alanant, " the men of Man," whom 
Cuchulainn cuts off in single combat, and is described as uttering 
a rhapsody on his fighl wilh Cel, king of the Fomorians. The 
LL. text may be condensed thus : Curoi's wife, Blathnat, daughtcr 
of Menn, lcing of Falga, loved Cuchulainn, and tiysted him to 
comc witb the Ulioaians to see her, so as to avenge on Curoi the 



loss of the " three red-eared cows and the caldron carried off from 
the siege of Falga" (to-day called "the Hebrides"); as also to 
avenge Curoi's shaving of Cuchulainn's hair. She bade him seek 
her on Halloween, saying she would pour out ihe milk of those 
cows which Curoi, aiong with the caldron, had brought home. 
It was to supply ihis vessel that the cows yielded, and they gave 
the fuU of it at a milking. She poured a whole milking into the 
stream from the fort downwards to Tralee, whereupon the stream 
became white. This was a signal for Cuchulaínn to storm the 
fort and slay Curoi. Herce the name Fionnghlas, " white-stream." 

So far as a certain signal is connected with a stream, it reminds 
one of an incident in the Saga of Tristan and Iseult, and Ihere is 
something parallel Ín Saxo Grammaticus. 

Fea : cf. Magh Fea in " Broccan's Hymn," 1. 59 ; piain in co. 

Femen, "the ancient name of the plain comprising the baron^ 
of Iffa and OfFa East in the S.E. of the co. of Tipperary."— O'D. 
It is near Cashel. 

06edel (§ 89) ; Cambrensis writes Ga!\deli; Cormac, Gsfídel, 
G&\dil, which latter is in Rawi., 512, fol. 81'', 14 ; LL. gives ae 
wilhout a mark of length (which is no isolated occurrencc) ; the 
Felire has ingloinestir nangaedel isaxsanaib, "in GIastonbury 
of the Gael in Saxonland" ; but Laud, 610, gives gaeidil, whereas 
RawL, 505, and Leb. Brecc. 91, give goidei, goedel, to rhyme with 
toiden, ioeden. The " Book of Rights " has Gaedhelga (pp. 86-87). 
The word is formed from a stem, gad, cognate with O. English 
gsGaJa, " companion, associate," e.g. ealle kis gegadan (Aelfric's 
Homilies). It signifies " companion-like, associates," and be- 
speaks a social sentimeui between communities speaking the 
same language, not out of keeping with the modern motto : Clanna 
nan Gaidheal an guaiUibh a chéile, " the sons of the Gael shoulder 
to shoulder." Further, the word is cognate with Gothic gadiliggs. 
"relalive," O.E. gaedeling, " stam»zes genosse," O.H.G, gatuling, 
"cousin," O. Saxon, gaduling, "landsman, counlryman" M.H. 
Ger. gaten, " to bring together," Ger. gaite, husband. The 
notion of "keeping together" is at the bottomofwhat is thought 
and felt to be good, a good action being readily apprehended Ín 
early times as one in virtue of which a course of conduct, on the 
part of the individual and of his social environment, tended, among 
other things, towards self-preserving welfare. There is no founda- 
tion for holding that the good was at firat abstractly apprehended, 
Rather the reverse. In the social consciousness alone rests the 
foundation for the development of what is good. One may recall 


thc words of a true friend ; " Alas 1 for the fact which I shall 

s piliful for the Irish to 

the evil habil 

of fighting among ihemselves, and that the)- do not risc togcther 
against thc Lochlann{er)s."— " Threc Fragmcnts of Irish Annals," 
p. 141, under the year 859. One who lays ihis fceiing to heart 
may comc to under^tand ihe Íntcnsity of the old words ; 
" Gaid/iel, Giiidhel! ionmain ainiii." 
" Gael, Gael \ beloved the name." 

Mag mBreg, name of a large plain Ín Easl Meath — the plain 
from Dublin to Drogheda. 

Mag-Liphthe : lies principall)' in the present ci 

Iilag Medba, " the plain of Méve " in Oriel. 

MureBG : " sea-shore marsh ? " a place of this n; 
but the one here referred to was in co. Louth. 

BoB-£fi : in the plain of Bregia. O'D.'s not( 

>. Rildare. 

1 AFM. sub 

Sesclcd Uairbeóil : cf. Esgcir Oervcil in Ireland, spokcn of in 
the Mabinogi of Kulhwch and Olwen. It is thought to have bcen 
on the coast of Leinster. 

Sliab Fnait : named after Fuat, son of Bile, son of Brig, son 
of Breogann. A mouniain near Newtown Hamilton, co. Aimagh, 
is Sliab Uait Ín "Annals of Ulsler." Hence the/appears to be 
prothetic Ual from *Avenio-s, cognate with mons AvenUitusf 
as to which see Stokes in RC, 16, 52. 

Snám Bathaind, see AFM. sub a.d. 114B. O'Donovan 
thought this was probably one oí Ihe ancient names of Drumsna 
on the Shannon, on the confines of the countles of Roscommon 
and Leitrim. As to thc origin of the word, a like story is told in 
the fíítmes Dindsenchus (RC., 16, 57), where Dr. Stokes renders it 
" Rathen's Swimming Placc." 

Tor m-BregOÍnd : perhaps the tower of Corunna (Bregantium), 
N.W. Spain ; cf. Keating. 

tnftld, gen. pl. Ulad «- : some derive it from ula, "beard," 
cognate with S)fí.pula. This is not more teliable than the scries 
of guesses in the CéirAnmatin. UltonÍa, roughly 5peaking, corrc- 
sponds to the present-day Ulster ; Ulidia Íncluded only the N.E. 
portion of Ultonia. For the oldest form of the word, see Ptolemy. 
It secms to me to be non-Gadelic. The suffix -sier Ín Ulster is 
derived by Dr. Wadstein, Upsala, from -siir=\\. iir, land + pro- 
thetic s. He found Ulad^stir Ín an leelandic saga. The derivation 
hitherto has been from Norse setr, "seat, residence." 

UrroB Domnand : in co. Mayo ; v. " Tale of Children of 



SUPERSCRIPTION ; Tochitn, lit. " mareh, progress, ejtpedilion" ; 
fr. do-chingim ; cingim, "I go"; Cym. rhy-gyngu, "lo amble" ; 
O. Ir. céimm; Mod. Gael. ceum, "a siep." Chemin is from a 
cognate root whlch has passed into French from the Gaulish. 
The rendering "hosting" is U5ually reserved for slúagad. At 
the very end of the tale Tochim, &c, is put last, suggesting per- 
haps that the march of the Uhonians to Cruachan belonged to a 
different recension. 

Cennach, lii. "arrangemeni, stipulation" ; Mod. Ga.t\. cecamach, 
" purchasing " ; is c. air, " bother it ! " íií. " it is a-purchasing Ít." 

Netn-thenga : Cym. nyw, "poison" (Pen. MS. 14) + O. Ir. 
tengej L. dingua, lingua; E. tongue. 

íamalta, fr, toimlim, do-melim, " 1 eat" ; Cym. malu; L. molo; 
Ger. mahlen. The coniext is lit. " for serving the consumption of 
the feast." 

adbur, "material," pronounced ate^r in Munster in the phrase 
ta adhbhur duine math ann, " he has the makings of a good man 
in him" ; "usually OUR" (Hen. p. 22). A somewhat similar pro- 
nunciation exists in Sutherland. 

elathain, fr. elaiha; Cym. el, "intelligence" ; Mod. Gael. eald- 
hain, "art, science," which MacAlpine writes ealain, "trade, 
occupation, profession." 

cáimi, fr. cóim, cóem; O. Cym. cum; Eng. home; Mod. Gael. 
caomh, " dear, kind, lender." See Windisch in IF. i. 

cumtach/ac, connected with Ir. cúimigim (gl. architector, gl, 
construo) ; *cum-od-tego, root in L. tego, Eng. thatch; eter cháimi 
ocus chumtachtae, íit. "both as to beauty and as to building." 

úatni, in the pl. stiU current in the ^htas^ fuaithníean a hheirt- 
fhighe, " the posts of the loom" (UÍst). 

airinigi, air+enech, "face" ; hence " on-facings," i.e. frontings, 

so-chraide, " magnificent " ; cf. sa-cruidhe, "pulcher." 

ir-scaríad, Cym. ysgyíhni, " lo carve, lop, prune." 
im-dorus, lit. "ihat which is about the door" ; Cyin. drwa 
(owing to its having had the accent on the second syllable). 

Sudigud Tigt Midchuarta, lit. " plan of Mead-Court House," 
vvhere Míd is cognaie with Eng. meads cuairt, gen. cuarta, from 
*kukrti, "circuitus," root as in iW, "circle" (US. 93). Perhaps 
from Lqw L. cortis, "a courtyard, court, palace"; " cuaird, 'a 
visit,' an old loan-word. The same word borrowed again later is 
cuairl, 'a court'" (" Hen." p. 58, 2). For fuU descripiion of Tech 
Midchuarta see Pelrie " On ihe History and Antiquities of Tara 
Hill," p. 197, being vol. 18 of Trans. of Roy. Ir. Acadeiny, yeat 
1839 i cf. Gilberfs " Facsimiles of Naiional MSS. of Jreland," pL 
ii. pl. liii. Petrie says : " In the ground-plan of Tech Midchuarta 
ihe honse is shown as divided inio five divisions, which are again 
subdivided inio several others. Each of the Iwo divisions extend- 
Íng along the side walls is shown as subdivided Ínto Iwelve imdas, 
which here means 'seats' ; each of ihe two divisions adjoining 
them inío eight ; and the cenlral division is represented as con- 
taining three Jires at equal distances, a vat, a chandelier, and an 
erlarcaich, besides two compartments on each side of the door 
and three in the other extremity of the house opposite the door. 

d reachíaires." This 

having its lower eod 

th, with walls to the cast 

the prose account, there 

/en on eaeh side." The 

occupied by the distributors, cup-bea 
banqueiing-house was an "oblong s 
to the north and higher end to the sc 
and west, In these walls, according t 
were twelve or fourteen doors, six or s 
ruins measure 759 feet Ín length by 46 feet in breadth, but for- 
merly it was wider. Its oblong shape reminds one of the shape of 
the banqueting-hall of the king of the Arveni Bituitos (Posidonius 
in Athenffius, ed. Didot-Mijller, "Fragmenta Historicorum Grae- 
conjm," iii. p. 262), which was not round, as was usually the case 
in Gaul (Strabo, IV. ch. iv.), and as Méve's palace at Cruachan 
must have been. The Mead Hail at Tara was also known as 
Z.onjr nam Ean, and is said to have held a ihousand soldiers, " the 
choice part of the men of Erin." The old Norse " Speculum 
Regale," going back on a written account, says that "there (at 
Tara) the king had a fair and well-builc castie, in that castle a 
fair hall and spacious, and in that hall was he wont to sit in 

imda, pl. imdada. " This word is now used in the North of 




Ireiand to signify "a couch, a bed," and in a gloss on the poem 
of Kineth O'Hartígan, ihe word airei is explained by it ; but it 
appears from the ground-plan in the " Book of Glendalough " and 
H. 2, (6, that the imdas were the aparlments where the different 
ranks sat at the banquet (Petrie's "Tara," p. 197). He also talces 
imda to mcan "seat,"as quoted above. It is used both for "com- 
partment, division," and for a "couch" set Iherein. In Duil 
Lailhne (H. 1, 15) s^eng is glossed iomda, and 0'CIery defines 
sceng .1. leaba no both bheag ina mbi leaba, " a bed or a small 
booth wherein is a bed." A word of like spelling means "shoulder." 
The guests sat in the imdas, which could not therefore have 
been sleepiug-places. The arrangement may have corresponded 
to that of the Slcáli or Halls of Iceland, consisting of a nave and 
two side aisles, the wa.I!s of the aisles being low enough to be 
mounted with ease. The nave rose high on two rows of pillars 
of timber with timber roof open at the top, wainscot littings along 
the walis of the side aisles, a wainscot pane! between the pillars of 
the inner row. The wainscot had doors opening into the sleeping- 
places round ihe sides of the building, with other sleeping-places 
arranged in the passages or on the dais at Ihe end. Fires ofteB 
octupied the centre of the nave, but tables were added at titnes of 
feasting. Inside the nave was a row of benches with a high seat 
in ihe centre of each. Weapons were hung up as in Ireland along 
the wainscot behind the warriors. There were a double set of 
partitions : (i) those inside the wall, divided by low partitions and 
occupied by seats or benches ; (2) the sleeping-rooms outside. 
The word imda might have been applied to both, or to the seats 
which occupied the compartments. I have therefore rendered it 
(i) companment, (2) couch, according to the context. One might 
fiirther think of them as recesses between the pillars. 

o ihenid, dat. of iene, " fire " ; sometimes a shorter form occurs 
in the phrase o íhein co fraig; also in Fiacc's Hymn : asin ien 
adgladastar, "out of the fire he addressed him." 

cridumae, gloss on auricalcum, SG. T^ ; O. Cym. emid; Mod. 
Welsh, ejydd, "copper, brass." The Cymric e stands for a vowel 
which had becomc Índistinct owing to its having stood before the 
tone syllable. 

carmwcal, gen. - — -ail; "applied Ioosely by the ancient Irish 
to any shining stone of a red colour, such as the gamet, a pro- 
duction of the country (Petrie's " Tara," 195) ; see sub Latin " Loan- 

adaig, *ad-agl, aidche *ad-agid, root *fi?, " to be darlt " ; c/. 
L. aquilus, op-Acus ; LÍth, áJtlas, " blind" ; Gr. 3jcapai (US. 326). 



dano, ergo, etiam. 

trred, dual gen. of err, " ehariot-chief," Ihe hero who fought in 
a cbariot. Stokes compares Gr. tpb'jv, líph')*, ^ppi'i "male" ; Zend. 

sesrec/t, " plough-ieam," fr. íí', " six." 

oen-slaite : ihe force of oen is tntensive ; slal, " rod, twig." 
Rian iad aon duine de Chumhal, " Ihey made one man of Cumhal, 
i.e. they made him kmg (Eriskay Gaelic tale) ; Qym. yslaih, lUUh, 
whence Eng. lath. 


grianán, "a soUer, balcony, sun-bower," ít. pian, "sun." In 
Scotland ,gr(anun occurs in fla.ce-names, e.£., ^'anan Dfcearduil, 
"thc sun-bower of Derdire," at the head of Loch Etive. Il Ís 
applicable to ary sunny spot ; (i) in Sc Ga. also "delight," e.^. 
'se sin a ghrianan, "that's his delight"; (3) as a verbal derivative, 
bha e ga ghriananachdiiinn fhéin, "be was suhning himself." 

gaÍU, gen. oi gal; O. Brel. gal, "force, puissance" ; Gaulish 
Calatos, Galatia; c/. Cym. gallu, " 10 be ab!e." 

^ainide, adj., "of glass," fr. glain, gloin, "glass, crystal" ; 
root in gtan, "pure, clean," which occurs in Continental river 
names, Glana, a ríver of Gaul ; Glan, a stream near Salzburg. 
Common!y talren froni root glai, whence Eng. clean; but it might 
have come from a proto-Celtic *glasne- with root glas, whence 
E. glass. Cognate wilh W. glain, " crystal " ; also in Cym. giai/i- 
naidhi, " serpent glass," Ihe amber of Welsh tradition. 

imeiisiu, " view, sight " ; *imm-accaisiu, fr. imm, " about," and 
root oc as ia L. oculus. 

fUleicfiíis, for ni.s.leicJUis, "they would not allow him"; the 
infixed pronoun has dropped out. 

In tan, " when." This expression seems preserved in Scotland 
as an, " when" usually 'nuair, e.g. an a Ihsinig e (Arran), "when 
he came." With tan cf. Skr, lan, " duration," íáná, " continuaIIy." 

3á urlam la Bricrind: note the force of la = "\n Bricriu's 

brecánaib, "blankets," fr. brec, glossed in MI. (gth cent) 
tinctum, so that it applied to dyed and coioured stufTs. Blankets 
with coloured borders are called plaideachan, lit. " plaids," -versus 
the ^aim planffiid, "blanket" of unifonn colour. Nowadays 



breacait in the Highlands means, (u) a tarlan plaid, {b) lartan in 
the wider sense : b. nam Frisealach, " Fraser-tartan." 

cohthib, "beds," fr. L. culcita, which through Fr, and Low L. 
has yielded Eng. " quilt " and " cushion " {v. Slteat). 

cerchcallib, fr. L. cervlcal, " a pillow or bolster," fr. cervix, 
"neck" ; cf. Ga. cluasag, fem. "pillow," dimin. íi:. cluas, "ear." 

lincor, *do-incor, in + cur, as in urchar, i.e. "in-put." 

lind, "drink, ale" ; Cym. llynn, "liquor" ; llynna, "potitare" ; 
Mod. Ga, limn, leann, "beer, a]e," versus bebir, "black beer, 
spruce"; Nonn-dubh, "melanchQly" ; eadar dha lionn, " twixt 
sinWng and swimming"; biast da iionn, "a particular klnd of 
parasite" said to infest the brain. 

deintrub, " fumiture " ; cf. Cym. dodrefit, " íurniture " ; perhaps 
*do-intrub, "household utensils," supelUx. 

toracht, *to-/o-rachl, root rég as Ín éirich, " rise " ; fr. tóruighe, 
"pursuer," comes Eng, Tory. 

arcend, <Zyva. yn y erbyn, *are-pennjo; cf. Cym. lleidr, "robber," 
fr. L. latro; Cyin. neidr, naidr, "nadder." Cym. puts in a/, as if 
these words were from *latrio, *nairio. 

le as Sc. Ga. aonach, ' 
1 Sc. Ga. the sense of 

loor" ; the root is as u 
e-union, assemblv," is ii 


^S' '"'i "king"; Cym. rA/ dominus, baro, satrapas, nobilis 
(Davies) ; Skr. ráj ; L. rex. Gothic reiks, " ruler," herrscher, 
oberster, is a proto-Germanic ioan from Old Celtic ; sce OsthofTs 
Morphologische Untersuchungeny iv. To Lat. í, as in régein, it 
is Germ, Í, á, that corresponds. 

dingniam-ni: i pl. enclitic fotm of reduplicated future of 
do-gniu, "I make" (KZ. 30, 64). 

airut-sa, "íor thy sake, on thine account"; prep. ar+íu, 

didiu, igitur, auiem. It is never din nor dinoj c/. KS. i. 23 ; 

RC. 1 



im dul doj im has ihe force of " wiih respect 10." 
tais/ena: not conj. 2 sg. (as in Windisch's WóriírbucK),\MK 
3 sg. from iaiss-/enim , now taisbean, " to show, reveal." 



coiUdd,\tt. "hedeclared toB. thecniirecounsel"; c/. conéas/ar, 
Sg. 3, S.P. iii. 2 ; écaid, " narravit " (ex. alhgaid, root, gadl) ; con- 
tíesifar,SR. 3771. 

buden: Cym. byddin; O. Btel. íorfí'n, ^X.bedÍniou {g\. phalanges). 
Beuenbet^er (US. p. 176) would compare OHG, chutii, " Heerde," 
Swiss, hitt, " society, club " ; Ger. Izetle {von rebhiihnern), Ihe root 
of which, 5ays Ktuge, is gu, 10 dríve cattle. 

dús, i.e. dofhius, ad sciendum. 

Midi, gen. oí mide, regio media Hibemiae. The Rennes " Diod' 
senchus" is to the elTect ihat Mide, son of Brath, was the (irst to 
light a fire in Erin for the sons of Nemed, and the winards said, 
"'Tis an evil smoUe" {iiii-d/), &c., RC. 15, 297. It is connected 
with L. nudius, E. mid in mid-night, mid-ritf, &c, O.E. midd, 
Gaulish medio-, in M(íiu-/iar^uf[, Medio-tanum. 

scrútan, founded on L. scrutor. 

im, dm, " sooth, Índeed," is still used i 
beirt eile tagia arls ápa, le súil go bfagdaois 
gcainte," p. 7, 1. 12 of Sgeuluideact éúige n 
Laogaire. Ba.ile'Atha-Cliath, 1895. 

Munster, e.g. "atá 
rud éigin do bárr ár 
ag Pádruig o 


do, "of," for di, de; Zimmer {fíeltische S/udien, ii.: Ueber 
Altirische Betonung und Versiunst, Berlin, Weidmannsche Buch- 
handlung, 1884) shows e.g. that de, di, is the accented form of the 
preposition in compounds, do the uniLccented proclitic focm {ib. 
p. 16). Where the accent is not on ihe first syllable, do appears. 
The preposliion before article and noun had, as a rule, no stress, 
and hcncc de (of), and do (to) fell together : e.g. dolécht (de 
adventu), dodégnimaib (de benefactis), Ml. dofuil (de sanguine), 
Taur. donspirut (de spiritu), dondaum (de bove), Wb. donaib 
remeperlib (de antedictis), ML. Gram. Celt. 637. These are not 
written " ncglegentius," but resuli from phonetic dtfference. TTie 
writers of the Milan and Wiiriburg glosses wrote often as tliey 
spoke. OccasionalIy the fomi di, when emphasis was given it, 
was diffetentiated from do (ad), and Ihere is a tendency to rctain 
it in the historic script, e.g. dichorp, digeintib, dinaibferaib (ZE. 
636), For thc modern language v. O'Donov. Ir. Gra 
In the Highlands a form dii with an obscurc vowel is often used 
in unaccented positions for de, "of." 




oír, "pig"i with/of thearticleprefixeditbecomesí'íjí 
akin lo h. porcus, whence " pork," and to "E.farrow; 
apparently in Orkney, i.e. the isle of whales, Ga. Inis Orc, but 
also Arcamh, ^Arcu. 

eitne, "kemel," survives in Ga. as eitein, "kernel of a nut," in 
North Inverness aitein. 

dia «-íj/='"do"+relaiive pron. a «- with Ihe substantive verb 

luigfir, "soft (green) biades (of grass)"; in Mod. Ga. aile 
lugach is "a boggy place," such as where com lodges. From ihis 
the idea of lug, "soft," suggests itself. Windisch thinks of lug, 
" little, small," ihe compatalive now being lug/ia, " less," but it 
seems less suitable. 

bargen: Cym. bara, "panis"; Stokes (US. 162) cf. O. Lat. 
ferctum, "a sacrificiai cake," from a lost Latin verb *fergo, "to 
bake" (i'. Lindsay's "Latin Language," p. 310, g 158. 

díod, Cym. dywdd, diwedd, "end" ^fa dhedidh, "at last." 

ara, Skr. ariíáj Gr. ípmjs, "rower"; Ú7T-r)pfTjjc, "rower, 

fdiibes/ar, cf.faite .i. snodha gdire, "afainC smile" (Highlands). 

fil : M, Chr. Sarauw takes it from root vel, "Co see" ; ímpera- 
ú'vefeil axfil meanC originally voici, afterwards it came to mean 
il y a;feil was strongly accentedy_í/ originally had a weaker 
accent ; from feil comes modem Gaelic bheil; from fii comes 
modem Irish/uí7. RC, 17, 276 ;>/ takes theaccusative afterit, as 
also 'vafilus, " there are " ; proleptically used 'aijilus tre chenelae 
martre, "there are three sorls of martjrs" cf. dosfil uli, "they 
all are." 

In tan íiagaí: LU. wrongly uses ihe absoluCe fomi tiagaií, 
which is rightly employed at the beginning of g 7. Absolute 
forms in 3 sg, wrongly used point to a late date ; cf. ZfDA. 33, 

echtrand: Cym. eiikyr, eilhr, "extra, praeter." 

udi : O. Ir. huide, "journey"; oitiO'n; L. ^m, foot ; Skr. 
pady& ; Gr. iroit, iroii,s ; E./oo/. 

ilathaib : the repetition of the same word with the addition of 
the suflix íV, " many," is no doubt Ídiomatic ; ///. " over fords and 
many fords," as we should say, " o'er many and maDy a ford." 


áolUei: Ht. "hc betates lumself." 

mac drelill, "darling, spoiled son" ; C)*m. trylhyll, "wanton" ; 
G. íarl, "tcnder" ; cf. Zend. dcreta, "honoured." 

lísainm, Cyni. llyseniv; Ihe other cognates of les are iin- 

aurbaga, "gloriatio." Does Mod. Gael. abhbagach {i.e. auba- 
gach), " sportive, wi]y," belong here ? 

tHoermr: h signified a slrong escape of breath. 

addaimet, " they confess " ; Mod. Ga. aidich, " confess " ; 
W. addef, vb, "lo acltnowledge, own." 

cia .i. fer, "a man." Stoltes equates it with L. irji'íi, Goth. 
heiva-frauja, "hausherr" (Ur. Spr. p. 75). 

tong, " swear," W. tyngii; cf dolhocadach, " unfortunate " (V.T.), 
from da = 8ue and tocad= Cym. tynged, " luclc." The Welsh phrase 
is "tyngu tynged : Je heb hi mi a tyrtghaf." dynghet (Mabinog. 
of Math) = I swear him a destiny, (f. 'L.fatum aaáfari; "fate" 
is " what is spolícn." Stokes (Ur. Sp. 121) lakes it from *íag, "to 
talce"; tong would thus be a case of nasalised stems lilte the 
Latin nasalised ptesent stems {ii. Lindsa/s " Lat. Lang," pp. 464, 
471). We should ihus have to compare L. iangere, "to touch." 
Among the Celts, as among otliEr peoples, an oath was associated 
wiih louehing some part of the body. In concluding a bargain, it 
is still usual to shake hands ; often the parties spit into the palm 
of the hand ; compare also the common sgialachd formula : air 
laimh fathair 's do sheanair, " by thy father and by thy grand- 
fe.ther's hand." 

eter, "at aH" ; Mod. Ga. idir, a locative case of the stem of 
the prep. eadar, " between." 

im-chossáit, " contcntion " ; Mod. Ga. casaid; it might perhaps 
be cognate with W. cynhenu, "to quarrel"; *con-sen-t- (Rhjs). 
Stokes thinks Ga. casaida loan fr. L. causaHo. It has been also 
thought to be a compound, con + Tooi, as '\nfaosaid, " confession." 


eter, prep., " beiween " ; eíer , 
-ntr> ■thr, -ntl> -thl in Welsh. 

maccSemii, borrowed into lA 
"youth, stripling, page, groom." 

bátár, relative form, baíir, absoluie form. 

formna, " the multitude," ///. "shoulders" {for+. 

both . , and." O.W, itAr; 

macwy, older form macwyf. 



ardope/eí: airfile ; *ar-svet-, Cym. chwytk:i, "to whistle, blow"; 
Mod. <^wA.fead. 

both; cf. Cym. Í)'ií'_v'^ {passive voice). 

imthórmaigib, "extras, ejctra dishes." 

dibl: di, two + bí, a word still in use in Mod. Gael. ; bigk, m. 
" a post, a piilar" ; eadar da bhigh an doruis, " between the posts 
of ihe door" ; eadar da bhlgh d ghsaia, "belween the portals or 
pillars of the gate (M'Alpine's " Gael. Dict."). The word accord- 
Íngly was known in Is)ay. In Colonsa^ it is used in the phrase 
eadar da bhi an doruis, "between the posts of the door," when 
you're neither in nor out, but belween the two (Professor Mac- 
kinnon). In Tiree, eadar an da bhi means " between the two posts 
of the outer door " =fiiifar an da ursainn. The phrase would 
never be used of any door but the outer one. The meaning seems 
to be "on the Ihreshold" or "half in and half out" (Donald 

I H- 

date : Q. Cornish, di-daul (gl. expers.) ; Ger. theil; Goth. dails; 
Eng. dícd (dole). 

mebul: Cym. 'nefl, "dedecus, turpitudo." 

gabtaií : "sie nehmen sie (ihre schilde) auf sich." Zimmer 
(KZ. 28, 317, 319) sees here a pronominal element, " wo das an die 
einfache verbal-form suffigierte element mit dem der compoiiierten 
infigierten auf gleicher stufe steht (ad-ta-sregat)." The older form 
is gabaii. Thurneysen thinlis the forras of the third pl. with 
double dental, gablait, gébtait, cesfaitit, are due to the iafluencc 
of the relative forms gabte, gébte, cesfaite (CZ. ii. So). 

nem : the older form of ihis word seems to be preserved in 
SR. line^ig: 

" mur nafaitchi, feib dasli 
rosdelbtha dofindruini, 
an-airde, adbul íansib 
otha thalraain coglangrein '' (417-420). 

There it is in the dative case ; the height is referred to as " vast 
beneath heaven from the ground unto the pure (or brilliant) sun," 
Father Hogan (Todd, Lect. Ser. iv. p. 115) quotes from Stokes: 
nóemneb, " holy heaven," dat. noemnib. The spelling with b is 
hardly accidental, although the nasalisation preceding would 




obscure í lo /«, which is the usual spelling. Riiss. nebo, "heaven"; 
Gr. vii^t, "doud"; Cym. ne/, "heaven" ; so too Slokes in KZ, 
a8, 292, while in US. 192 he connecis it with Skr. tiixittas, "rever- 

indala, "one of two" ; still current in North Inverness-shÍre. 

caÍU, " azure, enamel " ; Cym. calchlasar (" Mabin. of Manawd- 
dyan," p. 47, ed. Rhys-Evans). 

/efíirrf, fr._/ó-i:.íírí£iiw<, "jucio, depono" ; perf. '^ %%. fo-chaird, 
"dejecit" Stokes compares Gr. (pafiúw, ípafla.'™, "swing, shake," 
in pass. "to quiver" ; O. NorSc, hraía, 

lamad, Mod. Gael., lamk; cha lamh mi, "I canDOt"; Cym. 
llafasu, "audere"; *plamd, a short vowel form of the root of 
lilmh, "hand," thc idea being "manage to, dare to?" 

Icdmanda; dia talmande = gotl auf erden, dia talmaide wáre, 
"deus ex machina" {KZ. 28, 653). H. here has the better reading. 


riar, acc. irréir n-. Stokes eompares Skr. prÍnáH, Golh. 
frijén, " to love " ; also 'E.-friend. 

j^sus mnscif, lit. " inlonication seized thcm"; cf. nucdr a 
ghabh meisce na mná {CZ. i. 296). 

tairmchell dáillenid leo, " they came in a circle round the 
firc {0'Curry) ; "thece was made by thcm the circle of the firc- 

amal doragad airi, "as it should come to observation"{Rhys); 
"it happened just 10 his desire" (0'Curry). . . sech-ai, lit. "he sees her (go) past him.'' 

áis, " sovranty, powcr," a secondary sense of áis, Óis, " aetas " ; 
cf. an ainm Aí/iar áis, " in name of the Father of Power." 

iar trommi óil, "on being cup-shot," lit. "afler the heaviness 
of drinking." With thc drinking customs here portrayed one is 
involuntarily remindcd of those of Scandinavia, where the women 
drank " not a little" from the same cup as the guests, and sat at 
banquels paired with the men by lot, holding out to the last ; cf. 
Weinhold 5 Die Deutschen Frauen, ind ed., vol. Íi. p. 125, 

ptaiíh sin: it makes no proper sense if we render it "good 
now." Pcrhaps we should read sea; cf. nipu sen mailk, "il will 
not be good success " {" Battle of Mag Rath," p. 18). In %% 8, 10, 



II, i8, it comes at the very beginning of the address, Uke as old 
follcs I remember used lo say beannaich romham, "bless before 
me," ete entering a house. 

ed, "quantum," survives in the Highln.nds, e.g. (i) afe ed 's tha 
eadar riu, "whal distance is there between them? (2) ed's h 
cuimhneach Uam, " as far as I remember." 

lainbech, ig. 

" Asafe journey"is 0'Curry's 
r " full mate "icf.cha iC/huair 


slan seiss: we shuuld read seiss. 
paraphrase, /i7. "whole pleasure" 
e 'sheiss, "he didn't get his equal or mate." 

foll-cháin: with cáin cf. Ger. schon: Old Cymric inscripiion, 
cavne; as to epithets involving the word hair, cf. Gr. Xatrio^fttf, 
" shaggv-haired," &c 

húariud, "at enmity" (0'Curry) ; the context needs "jealous 
rivalry," or something such. 

A'/j, " youth " ; *joveníÍs \^. juventus. 

irdarcus: Cym, ardderch-og, "noble, exalted, subhme." 

§ 20. 
'■>' '"^i "hardly " ; see Atltinson " On Irish Lexicographv," p. 13, 
for several examples. 
futhairbe, " furrow." 

tuargabsat a linte, " they liíted their smoclcs 10 their buttocks " 
(//'/. "to the globes of their forlts") — Stolces. The aQthor oí the 
tale apparently had a sense of rough humour, and he here tries to 
have a broad hit at the great dames. I have rendered by " robes " 
here, as the Irish ladies' Unti of the period were cerlainly far re- 
raoved from whal we associate with a "smock" now, although I 
know the Anglo-Irish of Eliiabeth's day used the word. Fashions, 
even Ín Ireland, changed from time to time, and the details of 
gannents that go by the same name differed according to ranlc. 
Male garinents were also named Unti, and were linen kirtles (often 
rendered by ihe misleadlng term shirls, which is what the word 
would now mean), with wide sleeves down to the knees, generally 
dyed with saffron. Further, they had " woollen jackets but very 
short ! plain breeches close 10 their thighs, and over these they 
cast their mantles or shag-rugs, which Isidore calls Heieromallre, 


fringed with an agreeable mixture of colours, in which ihey wrap 
themselves up and sleep upon the baie ground. Such also do 
r the garment which comes down to (heir 
anlcles, and ihey load their heads rather than adom them with 
several elles of fine linen rollcd up in wreaths, as they do their 
necks with neclclaces and iheir anns with bracelets" (J. Goodc's 
1566, given in Camden, ed. 1722, p. 1422. Bishop 
Leslie of Ross in his Latin worlt on the origin, customs, and history 

of the Scols, published aX Rome ii 
"Bol the cleithing of ihe ■ 
for thair coles war syd {i.e. silk) e 
wyd mantilis above or playde: 

5781 says of Ihe female ci 
with thame was maist decent, 
in to the hanckleith (í'.e. ankles) 
all embroudirct arliticiouahe ; 

bracelets aboul their artnes, iewalis about thair neck, broches 
hinging at thair halse, baith cumtie and deceni and mekle lo thair 
decore and oulsett" (Faiher Cod^s trans. p. 94, ed. by Falhcr 
Dalrymple for Scottish Text Society). What was true in the 
sixteenth ceniury was true, to all intents, centuries carlier in this 

co mellaib a larach : cf. gaóaid a lénid i n-ardgabáil ós mellach 
II lAruch -j gabaid a lummainjind/artocbalía iforcipul Ímme, "he 
tucked up his shirt over the rounds of his fork and WTapped him in 
Ihe folds of his white cloak" (" Vision of Mac Conglinne," ed. K. 

larac : explained by P, Cotiell as " the leg or thigh, or the leg 
and thigh"; lon-larg, "the hip and thigh"; translated /urea by 
Colgan ; glossed g^ul in H. i. 13, p. 360, I. 15 (MS. Trin. Coi!.). 
A larach was also the name for a portion of honour at feasts ; "to 
the ollave-hisiorian was given a larac to comfort him; to the 
briuga a l^trac to satisfy him, no low saying ; to Ihe aire ard a 
good smooth larac, honour not rude" (Peirie's "Tara"). As to 
honorific portionsofmeat,see"Anct. Laws,"i. 49,andi7C"Odyssey,° 
iv. 66. 

fothraind, gen. o{ Jothrand, fothronn ; Cym. godorun, "tumul- 
tuous noise." 

raeblanglár=ro leblangtdr, 3 pl. perf. oílingim, " I leap." 

fohnastar, S. pret. sg. 3, depon. ÍT. /o-lámaim. 

arlaslar: s-aorist fr. ad-gladur; " 
ihrem platie aus anrief" — Thumeyse 
lasar inni, Lc. 41, which, as the coi 

o dass sie die pfSrtne 
inKZ. 28, 152; c/: t 
ssponding Eg. I 

" that ye may address ihe youths," sho» 


mean : "that yc may address him" ; arlásar for arlásaid is an 
analogical formation ; subj. sg. i conidnarladur, LU, 113*7; 
pret. sg. 3, m arlassair, LU, 114*31 ; also in SR. 3791, in sense of 
allocutus est, Eg. conidnarlassair inri. 

clá, congate with Cym. cloi, "obserare, claudere, concludere," 
p1. closu, " clavi " ; Lat. clávusj Gr. «JV'jir. 

§ 22. 

"The pieces marked with R. Ín the margin of oldMSS. are bits 
of Rosc or Retairic (Rhetoric), are hard to render into EngUsh, as 
they are jerky, ejaculatory, allusive, or instances of aposiopesis or 
ellipsis"— Hogan's RR. xxÍÍÍ. "There are no stanzas, no regular 
number of syllab!es in the verse — if it may be termed verse — no 
rhyme, and of course no tetmination." The only ascertainable 
characteristics seem to be (i) alliteration ; (2) short jertiy sen- 
tences ; (3) a certain laconic and somewhat oracular diction," 
ib. xxviii. 

co.iom.berí-sa brú séír, lit. a free womb bore me. 

costud, see sub " Loan Words." 

ricát, form, appearance ; Ín Mod. Gael. riechd, which some- 
times means "wraithe" ; Cym. rhiih; lit. "\ am sprung from the 
body of a king and of a queen, in form (beauty) excelling [and in] 
manners (breeding)." 

bermr, short for at-berar in sense of L. fertur, "reported"; 
otherwise we must take Ít simply " Ís bom of me." 

nóithium ; v. grammatical analysis ; c/. however, mac Nessa 
jióitis morslúaig, " Mac Nessa den die grossen schaaren feierten," 
Ir. Teitte, iii. 528 ; nóilhi, fr. a verb meaning "celebrate, ennoble, 
multiply," V. Strachan " On Verbal System of SR.," p. 72. But 1 
regard it solely as an analogical formation with a play upon Nói- 
in Nóicride. It has nothing to do with nóidin, "infant." 

censert la feba fene : cf roíwaltsa ew olsiadi la feba féne , hi 
costud forchaini hi fogart genussa hi congraijwwwn rigna . in 
ecosc so chraid . conid chucww! baglhir cach n-delb sáer sochraid 
etiallaib ban búagnlthi. At mathi ém na feba sin ol Cuculainn. 
LU 124'', i.e. " I was brought up," said she, " in ancient virtues, in 
lawful behaviour, in the Ueeping of chastity, in rank equal 10 a 
queen, in stateliness of form, so that to me is attribuied every 
noble grace of form among the hosts of (Erin's ?) women." " Good 
indeed are those virtues," said Cuchulainn~(Kuno Me^er's trans. 
in " Hull," p. 67). Something historical lies in the background, 
and reminds one of Keating's account of the geasa {i.e. tabus) of 



the Feni : " The first, 
choase her for good 
oflér violencc to any 

ive a portion with a wife, but to 
1 virtues ; Ihe second, 
; the third, never to refuse any one 
for anything he tnight possess ; ihe fourth, that no single wartior 
shouid ever flec before nine [i.e. before less than ten] champions" 
— <Quoled ai Ín " Hyde," p. 373. 

/eii, acc. p\. /eia, "goodoess, virtue," cf. ain eolach hi /ebaib 
fiss, " I am Icamed in the excellencies of fcnowledge" ; cognate 
perhaps with Gr. 171^1, L. vegeo, vigeo" (Bei. Beit. xix.). 

/éne .• as uaed in this lale, it means " heroes of valour, warríors," 
being synonyinous with latii gaile; c/. — 

" Ín muir mór conmllib scel ■ 

triastuc Dia claind n-Israhél I 

rodáil rf grene cenrainn 
forformnu féne Forainn " — SR. 3992, 

where the flighl of the Children of Israel through the Red Sea 
with ihe King of Egypt's warriors in pursuit is described, as ts 
dear from 

" doarfas Bs foromm cert 
doForann dortg Egept ° — ib. 3325-6. 

Saltair na Rann is a composition so near in point of date to that 
of this tale, ihat the meaning the word bears in the one work tnay 
be reasonably assigned it Ín the other. The reference to armed 
Iroops or battalions can be secn Ín 

a ié //ne /echtac/i—\h. 6015. 

The adjeaive carries with it the idea of"oppressive," &c., as when 
the troubles of the Resurrection Day are descrihed — 

" biaid fogur fenedach 
congairib grandaib garbaib 
isindomniich dedenach 
rian-eisseirge domarbaib"- 


•>. 8021-4. 

C/. the description of the troubles following upon Herod's Slaughter 
of the Innocents in L.Br. — "there were there among the mothers 
hoarse cries . . . bruised hearls, deeds of soldiers (ferta fenneii) 
. . . bared breasts (cic/ie nochfa)"—'Vaáá'% Lect. Ser. vi, p. 81. This 
interprelation is boine out by a gloss I have noted ; /emen .1. bean, 
seach bafimeii ba/eindidh, "though she was a woman she was a 
warrior." That a heroine of ald Irish saga should speak of her- 
self as trained in warrior-virtues is as it ought to be. 


fo-gart: cf. Cym. gwardd "prohibition" ; vb. "to forbid." 
There is also another word,^arí', gen, ^Wa, A.fiile, " liberalitj', 
bounty, hospitality ; in the old version of TE, Emer says ; I am 
the daughter of a king, a ruddy flame of hospitality {ingen rig, 
richis garla)." 

geinsiu: cf. genus, "desire" — "AncL Laws," ii. 351. 

genas, "castitas." Hence /('/, "in restraint of desire, (in) 

luchthond, "grey-skinned" ; Ín translating, I have followed 
luchdonn, the form in A, taking luck = loch, " 3.\\" + donn, "noble." 
We are precluded from taking it as representing the Mod. Gael. 
Íachdtinn, " tawny," for that appears aa lachtna in § 91. There is 
here a poet's play upon words ; the like phrase occurs in § 46, 
where Eg. reads in liich domi, H. Ín luc donn., 3 sg. pres. ind., ///. "he defends them" ; c/. Ml. 38", 
where mmdichim-se is glossed vindico., "he covers them, he protects them" ; cf. Ml. 
iarnndi adcuaidsom dineuch imtneíhecrathar crist dianechtair 
contoi talmaidiu duaisttdis de fessin Aír="after he has spoken 
of al! that covers Christ without {i.e. his outward appearance), he 
suddenly tums to speak of Himself " — Strachan. 

búagelioch, but Eg. is more correct. Windisch renders it 
eifersuchtig auf sieg" with a query quoting gtaitaeh, "fearful, 
jealoos," from 0'Rei!ly ; cf. Norse, verlia al gjaltí, "to turn mad 
with terror," where gjalti in all Iikelihood is borrowed from Irish 
^ilt, " mad by fear." 


congraimm : cf. ^ 44. 

eoiblethar (1. 1 1) : Eg. and H. show we should have this spelling 
also in 1. f^,*con-velel-j Cym. gweied, "tosee, perceive, obaerve" ; 
" should be seen stepping" expresses Ihe general senae. Cf. 

Cen. sg. — lid, SR. 5719 ; dat.—iiud, ib. 6066, the phrase being 
ar chrutk,ar chéii,ar choibliudf-nher^ King David is being praised ; 
coibliud buada {LU. 102'', 21), "a picture of graces, a sight of 
excellences." Strachan thinks coibliud may stand for com-flliud. 
A different word ia coibled, "a banquet," SR. 7603 {con-Jied), where 
it Ía used of the Feast at Cana. 

cred-mair, "big-shielded." might formally be either pres. ind. or ru-less preter. of 
*do-tnd-sóim. The historic pres. and the pret. are often found 
together, eg. LU. 57', 30, dothiagat . , . co feotar, " they go . . . and 

slepl" (Slrachan in Trans. Phil. Soc. for 1896, p. 166) ; cf. tintaí 
Patraic friu, " Patriclt turoed towards them" {VT. 1IÍ2, I. 27). 
comaig, pres. 3 sg. fr. co-imm-agim. 


The Eg. reading of the whole 

n contrast with luth s 

welcomc" (Highlands). 

co.tem.gitia,sa, " endows r 

linc Ís 10 be preferred. 

bédghtir, Slc, " every beautiful form is pilted against me." 

sifer setta déine : the line = so that my glance in my natural 

countenance is a free jewel of men, i.e. attracts men to my bright 

séerligi, &c., " free love of si 
" joy of true love." 

fladetarlu, ci.fiadhaich, vb. " 

ches, "common, customary, weakly {?)." 

feid, " looks, sees " j cf. Cym, givedd, " aspect" 

fuither, L. intrum; may be the word is cognate, not borrowed. 
Somc archaic psycho]ogy is in the background ; cf. " Hib. Lect." 

foceird ich n-erred indáib; cf focHtird hlch n-erred n-indnae, 
% 51. It is a stereotyped phrase for " heroes' salmon-leap" ; also 
cor H-íach, § S7 ; cor is necessary to the grammalical constructioo, 
ích, iach, being gen. from tó, "salmon," !t is uncertaia how 
indnae, indáib are to be analysed ; I have paraphrased it as "in 
mr," which suits the idea but is no translation. 

atetha, 3 sg. ind. of adethaim, "ich gehe heran, ich nehme 
ergreife, erlange, finde" ; often used in the sense oíieridieis; Ít 
always is found with an Íníixed pronoun, usually /, to eiipress the 
object; for examples see KZ. 30, 73,^ {LU. 113''). 

conboing, " confringit " j 3 sg. pres. fr. cam-bongaim, " I break." 
falgai, 3 sg. pres. í, " beat down, dismay " ; " sterait 
mundi superba agmina." 

ietAo, gen. of éith, m. "world, existence" ; Cym. byd; Gaid. 
bitu-; root di, "to live," whence L, vivo and E, be; cf.fir betha 
(Ml. 16*^); docotar iterum fri tola in beiho, " they went again to 
desires of thc world" (Wb. 29*). 

úath, Cor. uth, Bret. eus, heuz, "horror"; *pouto-, h. pu/rid, 

darcna, cf. torc, "king" ; Ít may be dialectal or purposely 

jí fer s'eirgeis illigu, " he is a man that hews down many 



!S crón chutma cúaride, "as heavy copper the braves" (? ?). 
The last word inay be some purposely fonned distortion from cur, 

crón, cf, crúan, "red"; crón ./. dear g {0'C\ery's Glossary) ; 
from *krok-no, cognate with Greelc Kp6Kos, "the purple crocus" 
(Stokes). The Hebrew-Arabic karkóm, "safFron" is in that case 
a loan-word in Semitic, 

" cruan, a kind of the old art*work from abroad (anall.). Cruan 
is the red and créduma, Le. the yellow. Maithm, i.e. the yellow 
and red and while" (O'Davoren). The red material to wbich the 
old enamel owed its colour has proved to be red oxide of copper 
(Trans. R.I.A. xxx. z8o). Perhaps she compares them to verdi- 
grís or inakes an equally odious comparíson. 

siuil, gen. sg. of siul .i. imda, "bed" (O'Dav.), cf. Eng. " to be 
brought a-bed=to be delivered of a ehild" (Stokes Ín " Ir. Text." 
ii. SJ6). 


luan laith, "hero's light," otherwise called lún gaite; cf. II. v. 
as to the fire which Athene makes to bum on Diomedes' head i 
also II. xviii. "the light which blaies from the head of Achilles ;* 

olruch, lit. "so that they were on the dung-heap." Still worse 
was the plight of Ajax — 

" Trípped up by Pallas, Ajax slipped and fell 
Amid the oíFal of the lowing kine, 
Which o'er Patroclus Peieus' son had slain, 
HÍs mouth and nostrils were with ofial filled." 

Iliad xxiii. 899-902, 

In the courtyard of the Homeríc palace the dung was regularly 
coUected from the animals stalled there ; v. Leafs " Iliad," vol. ii. 
p. 374"- 

adsoirg a bossa, " he beat them his palms " ; j-infixed used 
proIepticalIy ; violent motion of the hands is meant ; cf. insorg; 
innsorgiun .i. bidh doigh comadh inann ocus gluaisacht no imluadh 
— O'Davoren ; ionnsort, "moved" — O'Don. Suppl. 

Nimatorchomlad-sa : cf. chomollod, § 94, fr. comallaim, "to 
iatisfy, fill with food (L. impUre), to fiilfil." JVí.OTaí.+^not welL 


[that] a feast has been prepared for you," or with Eg, "not well 
that 1 have prepared a feast for you." 

iongad, fr. longaim, " I eat " ; Cyni. llewii, " to eat." 

riaiírad, "ea ergrifT ihn lornes-glul" (CZ. i. 38); cf. Cyni. 
rka>ystro, " to hinder, obstruct" 

maeldub demis, "an utter {lit. black) baldness of shears" ; dub 
here rathet ÍDtensiíies than expresses a colour ; c/. dubh-bhreugachf 
said of one utterly addicted to lying ; dtmis, still in daily use in the 
North Highlands but doI current Ín some of the southem islets ; in 
Munster it sounds as djees, Che vowels being nasai, in N. Inver- 
ness djei-ish, with nasalised vowels ; *di, '■'Viia'^-Vmess, "edge" 
(Cotmac), from root met, "to cut," meith, "to prunc," L. méío, 

cirdub: " dark-yellow," foilowing Zimmer's explanation, kamin- 
duniel, dunkel wie der kamm der birke gegen herbsíende . . . dunhsl- 
gelb, dunkel-grau (KZ. 30, 30-35). But in CZ. i. 38, he renders 
this passage íiefschwarse lochenharr. The fortner is more in 
accord wiih the colour of Cuchulainn's [ocks ; deep-biack seems 
utterly inappropriaie. To gel this rendering Zimmer points to the 
phrase dubithir a'r, " dunkler als der kamm [der birke gegen ende 
des herbstes] as paving the way towards clrdub, " dark-ycllow, 
dark-grey." In g 50 one of Cuchulainn's steeds is described as 
cirdub, and I have made it dark-grey, for which we have Che autho- 
rity of Madeod and Dewar's Gael. Dicl. wheretheadj. n'dr, howevcr, 
is defined as dark-brotun as wcll as " dusky, dark-grey." It would 
evince, Zimmer thinks,peculiar taste on the part of such connoisseiurs 
of horses as the Irish, if their chief hero had a jei- or coal-black 
steed yoked alongside of a grey one. Even if they are symbols of 
night and day, as they are taken to bc (HuU. Ixxvi.), it Ís not 
necessary to render the epithet by "coal-blact" or "jet-blaclc," as 
0'Curry (" Manners and CusL," iii. 134) makes it, and some others. 
Concys gives ciar, " dark-grey, dusky, gloomy, dark-brown." 
Zimmer notes that in Mod. Irish old i and old la {i.e. Celtic e, 
European ei) are spoken alike as long i, and Ihat if cir in cirdub 
wereidentical withn'ar, thenthepresent Irishpronunciation"would 
hold good for i roo A.D., as both ciar and drdub occur in LU (40', 
42; 30', 30; 106'', II ; 122% 45); ciardub would then be dark- 
black, dark-brown." In Scotland dr, "comb," sounds quite dif- 
íerent from ciar, "dusky." The like phrase occurs in RR. 79, 
folt cas ciorr-dubh, " curling deep-yellow halr," where Hogan gives 


the alternative of "beetle-black" and quotes Zimmer's rendering 
of "darkish-yellowordark-grey." Stokes{US. 64)renders Ít "pore 
black"; *kiro-s, "rein, schier" ; cir-chorcra, "pure purplc" ; 
Bezzenberger compares Gr. ei/nr ■ Xixvos {Hesych.) ; Skr. hirána, 
" ray," iirí/a, " diadem." Consider, however, OE. scir, " bright," 
Mod. Eng. J-Aí'ír"bright, pure, perpendicuIar,"Gr. o-xwpós, "shady"; 
nor ought one to forget the steed's name, Dui SaingUnd, where 
fa(« = "especial, separate," gtend from *ghndo, "make clear" 
\^.3X.-gleinn, " demonstral," a root found in Gcr.glam, "splendour," glance ; beiice"the black fully resplendent one." In which 
case, as cirdub must have a similar connotalion, we are reduced to 
regard the horses as symbols of day and night. 

bró, gen, brón; Cym. breuan, f. hand-mill ; Com. brou {gL wo/a) ; 
Bret. breou, breo; Skr, grá-van, " stone for pressing Soma" ; 
c/. Eng. guern. 

adaniAa, gen. sg. aí acianad, "fervour, heat, zeal" ; the reading 
adartha is comipt {CZ. i. 87-88). 


tri chin m-ban, " through the fault of women," &c. ; cf. " Thus 
brought two women's quarrel many a good knight to die" {Nibe- 
lungenlied, Adventure xiv. stanza 902) ; the whole adventure tells 
how the two queens reviled one another, " each on a fiill knight 
thinking that either loved fuU well." 

con-iáisei, pies. pl. 3 ; Cym. /au, " silent," i^i, "silence" ; cf. 
Mod. Gael. /ós .i. clos, e.g. íhainig /os air an oidhche, " a calm came 
upon the night," i.e. "the night calmed" (Highlands). 

irgalaib, áaX. o( irgal : fray, sirife ; Cym. ana/, " thrill." 

frecra (frith-gare) ; Cym. gwr/hgair. 
damnad: c/. Cym. %or-dymi, '' to be used 
/orcetul, " Ínstructioa, teaching" ; */or-cai 

"sing" ; Qfni. ffwarcltan, " incantation." 
dirguid cretli : c/. CZ. i. 83°, 
brug, Í. fearann, " land " (Laws, vol. i' 

" graiing-ground at some distance off " ve 

green" ; c/. Laws, vol. i. 

zognate with 1 

narch, "border, frontier," OE. mearc, Goth. 

f. p. 134, 1. lÉ 
;rsus /ai/clie, ' 
33-35- The 

r64 NOTES 

míiria, Ger. mark, Lat. margo, Cymric, bro, Cymmro, pl. Cymmry, 
" fellow-landsmen," for *coin-brogcs, Gaulish, AJIo-irogíi {broga 
Caili agrum dicunt). Perhaps it fornis part of Bruiach (several 
places in the Highlands are thtis named). I might have rendered 
the text by "the grcat Marches of Erin." Dr. Windisch has 
quite erred in rendcring the context as der Lialh Morbragi d.i. der , 
graue Grosshahige {Ir. Textc, p. 252 ; also 339). 


»11 fhá no, " miaime " (Z*. 749) ; /Aií is for diS, dhé; Mid. Cym. do \ 
aa,"yta";>ia do, " minime " (ZE. 756) ; Mod. Cym. d 
naddo, "no." 

/or,also ol, "Ínquit," says he;/ordat ordat," sa.y they," also i 
oldat, L. ■uerbuin, E. -word, Gr, lípv, Tipiu ; *verio, " 1 Bay," Lith. 
vardas, " name," have been compared. 


brugi, plains ; Marches, Afarks; Hennessey in " Mesce Ulad" 
quotes Rawl. 502, e.g.filet ann brugi blaíM, "flowery plains are 
there ; cona brugaib /o blaith bil, " with Íts brugs under bright 

tongu do dia toinges mo thuath, " I swear to the god my people 
swear by" ; see noie sub § 1 1. This formula is 5pecially notice- 
able, as it has the word dia, "god"; lit. "I swear by thc god 
whom my pjcople swear by." O'BeÍrne Crowe would render it, 
" I swear for an oalh the oath of my territorics," thinlcing we have 
hcre O'Davoren's d^é glossed minna, "an oath" {c/. Skr. divyd) ; 
but this does violence to the use of do, and cannot be accepted. 
Curiously he thought the words "to God"=ííí dia, absurd in the 
mouth of a Pagan. That every tribe had its own god and cult 
seems the inference from this formula. 

tuath, "people," now "tenantry"; 
country " (Lewis) ; " an unleamed n 
(Concys) ; Cym. tud,_ " country, natioi 
L. tolus, "ali"i O. Prussian, íauta, 
"people"; Teutonic, Deutsch, Dutch. 

air an tuath, "in the 

n, plebeian, layman " 

Gaul. Touto, Teuto ,- 

"land"; Goth. piuda^ 

Cym. aihryvnyn, "paci- 


etrain, " interfcrence, intcrventio 

dir, gen. dúir; Cym. dir, "force"; Brct. dir, "steel" 
durus; Gau!. dúron, d&ros, US. 167. 

fiidtn, " effort," *veíi-men, " need-service," root ved; Eng. ■uiea 
LaL vas, vadisj Skr. vivadha, " shoulder-yoke " ; "[his will \ 
the] effort or exploit of a hero who wiU ask him." 

5 34- 
amgUcufe£krad-su,"am ungeschicktesten sind deinepferde" 

imtrommu, &c, "am schwersten geht dein wagen"— Wind. 
clod: Cyni. clawdd, "dyke," originally "hollow ditch." 

I pers. pron. suffixed ; "there Íí 
reproach for me." 

anam, conj. i pl. Mod. Gael. /iin, "stay"; Cym. di-anod, 
without delay." 

a m-boi. Note force of vb. subst. "as he was there he saw." 
scáil-fer, *skailo, as in Scathachj Goth, ga-skapjan (Bezz. 

Beit. 1 


rengmar, "of big'testide" ; c/. nirúásatar arenga {LU. 121'' 32, 
"his pudenda were not grown" (Strachan "On Verb Deponent," 
p. 568) ; renga rodaim, "reins of a great ax" (VT. 72, 10), properIy 

TO-chalma, Cym. cel/ydd, "skilled." 

ton, Cym. tin, bottom. 

inar: it might seem from this that the inar was not wom by 
the higher classes. 

coich et, lit. "to whom are" ; Cym. fiieu : pieu y bet, " whose is 
the grave" ("Black Book of Carmarthen," facs. p. 32); pwy pia 
hwn, "who is it who owns thera" (Rh?S in Beii. Beit. xix.). 


cungain, " cognovit " ; conna congain nem nd talmain, " so that 
he kiiew not heaven nor earth" — VT. ; root^«, "to know." The 
Eg. version uses an entirely diflerent word, meaning "was able" ; 

it ^rUÍ; as-gen-su, " inteilenisti " ; eXT-geuin, ' 
vaen (•at-guo-gTi), " I know " ; L, gno-sca. 
ara, LU. seems incorrcct ; sec Eg. readiiig. 



CiJwi-rfi>«OT«j=rfi'(jí«Bj'aM, "proud" (Highlands), fr. di-o 
rooi med, as Ín E. mete, L. meditari. 

colléic, "just now, for the prescnt" (Stoltcs) ; calUic, c 
semper, utique {T?, 6ia). 

dia tri la oeus teora n-aidchi {Eg.)="aSw: three days and 
Ihrce nights." This is an idiom ; cf. dia iliadna ="a.íter a year ; 
that day a year hence ;" bliadhain aftdiu'^"a year to-day." 


n with root as in L. ag-^ciíior, signifying 
I style of movement or attitude ; " carriage " perhaps might 
express Ít ; congrcUtnm, " cunning, com-plexio (?), apparel, appear- 
ance" (Echtra Nerai in RC.) ; dat. congraimmin ; cí § 23, "de- 


rfrífM, n. " wheel" ; Cym, /í'c, "versio, gyrus"; troi, "to tura, 
revolve " ; Gr. Tpo-nót, anything that runs round ; c/. Orgam Brudne 
Da Derga; con dadercaáa tria drocu na carpat s(i, "that I viewed 
them through the wheels of the chariot." The droch was sometimes 
of brass, sometimes of iron ; the tire of the wheel was the roth, 
often so sharp that one could not step over their edge : ni etaim 
dano lecht sech nechiar in da rvth iarndae in carpait ar afáebraige. 

all .i. srian, " bridle " (O'Cler^s Glossary). This must be the 
native name for bridle, as srian is from L. Jr&num. From the 
epithets attached it seems to have included bridles and reins all 
in one. The double introduction of all inlo the text must be due 
to a scribal blunder when comparing dÍtTerent versions. 

ferisi, pl. oí ferias, " two shafis projecting from the chariot 
behind" (O'B. Crowe in JRIAHA for 1870, voL i. of 4th ser. 
published in 187S). He quotes (a) ni dichtim dano sech in dam 
ii[r] rolin a cltongna eter difertais in carpat uile^ " I cannot, more- 



over, come past Ihe ox, for his homs have filled all between the two 
firías of the chariot ; (í) when Cuchulainn came back to Emain 
he had a flock of swaas tied above Ihe chariot and a wild ok {datn 
allaid indiaid a Sarpaií) behind his chariot. If, then, the ox had 
fílled up with Íts horns the space between the two fertas, and was 
in this position dragg'ed behind the chariot, it Ís evident the shafts 
must have been behind. These shafts were removable at pleasure, 
for in LL. 71 a certain person asks for the firtas of his chariot to 
try the depths of the ford before ihe horses : domroUdfirtas mo 
darpait co rofromur in aÍ rias in ecraid, " let the firtas of my 
chariot be reached me that I may try the ford before the horses." 
The shaft was given him and he sets about trying the fbrd. In 
TE. the phrase des/eríais in charpaií is rendered by K. Meyer by 
" right side of the pole of the chariot," although the pole is definitely 
spoken of a few lines farther on as sithbe. In LU. bs^, where it is 
mentioned that the chariot has mel with an accidenl, the phrase 
na firtse culind occurs, showing that the material could be of 
hoI!y {cf. HuU, p. 155). Crowe points to the hind-shafts seen on 
Roman coins, and concludes that (i) the chariot, like the common 
cart at present, could rest 011 them, (a) a board laid from one to 
the other might serve as a step for ascending and descending it. 
Such a "rest" attached behind he imagines th^ furis (g 70) to 
have been,— /cfTw, as he writes il. Cyni. gwerthed, "spindle, axle, 
what turns in ihe axle," root vert, " to tum," has been compared. 
But a chariot had only one axle. 

mind n-, " diadem " : note transition in sense to modem mionn, 
"oath," from the saints' insignia on which the oath was swom. 

drondudi: possibly the yellow meant is the colour of tanned 
leather ; dron-, " firm, compact " ; hence " heavy with," i.e. 
" mounted." 

ínind n-óir: Dr. MacCarthy, in a note on "Mind," wrongIy 
asserts as to 0'ReiUy's quotation from Cormac [" from mendax, i.e. 
lying"] : "To altribute this derivation to hira is a cmel libel on 
Cormac who has not given the word at all." Yes 1 see Cormac, 
ed. O'Donovan Stokes, p. 115, sub mittdech ... ab eo quod est 
mendicus .i. bregach. 

for.da.íuigithar, " which covers him (it)" ; c/. fordotuigithur, 
"Anc. Laws," ii. 284 ; orastuigithear, "Ir. Texte," iii. iS. 

ae=áe eomm, 2^, 327, 337 ; perhaps when th emeaning faded 
dil) was required, so that we have reduplication, "each of them of 
them" ; cf. however, ai, gl. "a haen," Eg. 90 fol. 17% i, which 
Slofces equates with O. Persian aiva, "one," Gr. oÍof, oífw, "on!y.' 

íiV, Cym, byl, " brim, edge " ; gwc-^, f. " lip." 



findruini, perhaps Íq^ Jind\b\tuini where bniini is cognate w 
E. bronxe, tii. " white-bronze." 

anblúth n-in n-eUgnaiíh, "a bird plumc of ibe usual feather" 
(Siillivan) ; but "unusiuJ" would be itiore in keeping with thc 
heroes' rank, so Ihat we want neitígnaid, which is what Eg. has, 
onIy ihat ihe slrolce over the i is missing — a very easy slip. 


drech, "mien" ; Cym. drych, "aspect." Either one or other is 

baraind, dal. oíbara; Cytn. bár, "ire, fary." 

sein, tn Scotland usually written sin, but the o)d sound is 
exemplilied in the " Book of Deer " and still prevails in Colonsay, 
parts of Uist, and in Harrís, &c. 


f/id, cf. Cym. gviedd. "aspect"; but consider Cym. ym-ar- 
•wedd, "se gerere" ; iT.fedim, " I bring." 

nín = ro+án, "swift, quiclt." 

iníiu, "sees not into them," i.e. cannot follow them. I suspect 
comiption from the difiFcrence Ín spelling between Eg. and Lí/.j 
it may have arisen from the influence of iirulh, for the reciter 
would no doubt gailop through this run. Even if this slight 
change may not be quite right, the rendering is not in any case 
vcry far from what the context demands. 

ét-ruth : ét, " jealousy," ruth (" race " ?), often Ín chevilles, luath 
aíT/M(SR. 3107,6043). 

derg, "bay," lit "red" ; cf. Zecharíab vi. 7, "and the bay went 
forth," which some versions render by " red." 

druimlethan foSeng feochair fond : " broad of back, very slender, 
wild and spirited" ; deleCc "of light and longdashingpace" ; fond 
in the sense of " long " is questionable ; Ít here means " glee, trim, 
high spirit," in wbich sense it has passed into English ^^fun. 

ríad, "running, going," cognate with Eng. ride; cf Gaul. réda, 
" chariot " ; Gr. F-píflov, " messenger, servant " (Bezz. Beit. xix.). 

dia, "two"; c/l, dia colamain, "two columns" {Chronicon 
Scotorum, p. zo6, Rolis Scr.). This form is not isotated. 

tel-bude, "with yetlow thongs" (stripes) ; cf. tell, *telno-s, "rie- 
men, streifen,"{US. 131). 

lond-brulh loga, " íierce flame of fire " ; the god Lug may be 

íía cáin cermnae, lit. "a smooth cuiting stone." 

curelhar, &c., c/. % 52; "he firmly heaps (puts) head upon 
head, exploit upon cjíploit, fight upon fight." 

Júasnadar,fitasnaUher: deponent forms used in middle sense 
(Strachan) ; the pass. fonn in the glosses is fuasnither (Ml. 66'', 

A'.S.— g§ 49-51 contain stock descriptions or runs ; in the 
present case, the Tochmarc Emere (" Wooing of Emer "), as in i U., 
contains several dauses which are absent in " Fled Bricrend." 
These are incorporated within square brackets, but in g 51 several 
hnes froni the same source are put at the íoot of the page, but 
brackeied in the translation. The old compiler or transcriber was 
in too great a hurry, and seems 10 have )eft them unwritten. 
Similar runs abound Ín Campbell's " West Highland Tales." I 
have often heard such recited ; it was quite astonishing to listen 
to the rapid diction, to observe ihe big drops of sweat which 
covered the reciter's brow. It needed a powerful memory and 
special training from childhood. Story-reciting Ín this style will 
in the course of thls generation become Ín the Highlands a lost 
art— if, indeed, it be not wholly lost already. 


trosmar; trost-inar, as Ín Eg. and H., is more correct ; Cym. 
irysi-faivr, lit. " sound-great." 

em-budi, "very yellow" (Crowe) ; cf.fern, "good" (Cormac) i 
here perhaps as intensive ; uncertain. 

óencharpait : ("This is the description oí) the chariot chief of a 
single-chariot" — following TE. 1 have taken áen- as intensive, 
cf. rinn iad aen duine dheth, " thcy made him a king " (Eriskay). 

och/ n-gemma : " Possibly the flashes of his eyes, or the gems 
serving as pupils in the middle of them, which are described as 
seven or eight in number (the latter, probably the original number, 
corresponding to the eight days of the Pagan week), referred 10 
the days of the week respeciively, as the three colours of hia hair 
possib]y did to the three parts of the day. And a reference to 



the appearance of ihe sun shorn of his rays may have been origi- 
nally involved Ín the f3ncy which made Cuchulainn's haii 
absorbed into his body, leaving a blood-red drop marking the place 1 
of each individual hair, when he was engaged in any great physical J 
efforl" (Hib, Lect. 437-438). 


tnalho, gen. of maiA, "bear" ; also /naM-gaman ; Gaul. Matu- 
genos ; Teuto-wiíi/«j'/ Cym. ntadawg, " fox." Ii may be interest- 
ing to state that the last ivolf seen in Ireland was lciiled gn a 
mountain in co. Kerry Ín 1735- 

COl.on.mela-ni, "he wÍU grind us," where the suffixed .on. "us," 
\% used proleptically, and is followed by aftixed ni, cognaie with 1 
Cym. ni; c/. Skr. nas, " us " ; L, nos ; Gr. poi ; with gen. dual nálhar 1 
,/ Gr. ...V.p.,. 

grian, Cym. graean, " gravel." 

leóit : Ii would be safer lo render il lifnb, thigh; cf. /ío=ball, ' 
" member," sub laarg (Cormac) ; Ín any case, the rendering is 
only inferred, as the glossaries fail us. 

comtúd, ítc, [the] equal swiftness of the chargers of vÍaory 
[as] [the] outbreafc of thunder [on a] hole in the roof ; toll, " bole " 
■¥clélhe, "ridge-pole, roof." 

iorann, gen. -ainn, airtd, "thunder" ; Cym. tarann; Gr. ropos, 
"loud"; Gaul. 7(1^11«« = Jupiter. 

allchliu, &c, " noble praise versus defamaiion." 

trethan, gen. of triath, "sea"; *treiton- ; Gr. Ifiam, -mnx, , 
Triton ; Treathan írii/fí = "sea-shore," a place-name in Deir- 
dire's " Farewell to Alba." 

finna fomochta, "falr full-naked"; i/! " Matres familiae de 
muro vestem argentumque jactabant pectore nudo prominentes et 
passis manibus obtestabanlur Romanos ut sibi parcereni " (CEesar, 
de Bello Gallico, vii. 47) ; also Fynes Mor^'son's " Travels," p. 181, 1 
tell of a nobleman who, on coining to the house of an Ulster chief, 1 
" was met at the door with sixteen women all naked except their 
loose mantles ; whereof eight or ten were very fair and two seemed ] 
very n^mphs." 

aurlani n-immchomraic : "with Ihe fuU number of girls ready ] 
together (prepared for action)" ; the stroke above the í'scarcely j 
means the usual n, though I left it in the text. I should expect a I 
form of Ím-ckomarc, " salute, greet." 

liss, n. pl. of less, "enclosure, court"; CyTn. llys, "aula, I 
palatium"; lios, "a house or town" (0'Clery) ; in Scotland, 




"a garden," froin Íts being enclosed ; lios, gen. lessa, " a fort, 
house, habitation" (Conej's); anglicised as liss, a place with an 
enclosing earthen wall, cognate with Eng. place, oríginalIy a. court- 
yatd, square, or piazia ; Gr. irXamt, " wide." 

dabcha, &c. ; cf. Hector's wife, who puts ihe caldrons on the 
fire for warm baths for a warrior (lliad, xxii.)- 

buirg Jaenbila, " open-mouthed castles, j.f. with open gates" 
(K. Meyer, according to whom (RC. x. 368) borg, nom. pl. buirg, is 
borrowed from Low Latin burgus). It was not an uncommon 
word. It occurs in the " FJlire"—rolin burcu in bet/ia, "hath 
filled the burgs (towns, cities) of the world" (Prol. v. 70). Yor/aen, 
cf {i) dothaegaí ind aingil ar a dndj allamafohta {LU. 173, 37), 
"open, outstretched"; (2) 7 si foen iinn="and she reclining 
there" (TE. in Rawlinson, ed. K. Meyer in RC.) ; {^)fden, "pros- 
trate" {LU. 76*); (4) dd slechtain déc 7 alláma foena fri Dta, 
"iheir hands outstretched to God" (Rawl. 512, foL 43"). 

foihud: cf fodcti, § 90, where Eg. has fotug, " sustenance, 


^■ar-laind, Cym. llan, " yard," 

faelie: cf. E. weal, ■wealth; Ger. ■wohl. Rhfs suggests Cym. 
gwell, "better," with which O. Slovenic 'velHi, "Co order, wish," 
Lith. wélyti, "to wish," may be cognate ; iCs root = to wish. 


iaulaich, dat of taulach, which must mean " vaulting, arch " ; cf. 
Cym. tyle, "acclivity, steep ascent" : a phan edrychwt y dyle 
{Rhonabwy's Dream, in Red Book, Mabinogion, p. 146, I. 5). 

aurgnom : see " Loan Words," sub fuine. In H. it is followed 
by bidhi " preparing food," and was technically used for " cooUing." 

bói trá día farsingi in tige co tallastar : the í in LU. for co of 
Eg. is corrupt unless it stands for \.==i.e. wich co understood after 
it ; the force is ; such was the width of the house that the mulCÍ- 
tude, S:c, would find room in it ; cf. bói tra diafot na lamae corro 
acht {% 82), " such was, however, the length of the hand thai he 

tosnaimechtár : cf. ni t/iaimechiar fodail (v. Wind, " Ir. Teirte," 
2" ser. i. p. 194»), There Windisch no longer regards tosnair- 
nechtár as 3 pl. perf. of tairicim, " I come," as he has given it in 
his dictionary. If one can in any way rely upon tosnaimechlatiií-, 



the Eg. reading, this would bc 3 pl. of a t- preierite with -tar 
short for -tatar. He supposes ii maj' belong 10 tairec, "prepare, 
aiiend up, supply." Although a /- pret. lairnechí from tairec may 
nol be quite 'norma]. But he points to aimecht from airidm. 
See also his Dici. sub aimecht. 

conaccraá, pres. sg. 3 ac(. It must from the context mean that 
AÍliII inquires (a^ks, entreats) of Conchobar ; d^i is for di; in § 
however, ii is 3 sg. pass., " was called (summoned)." 

ni bá nech iasftrr : note modal use of 6á, " ihetc wcre not any 
one thal is betler." 

ar is m6r do midlachaib alió^. Though Sencha assumes the 
exceilency of the Ultonian heroes, he may have ímplied that, in 
comparison with those three, all the rest of ihe Ultoniaas were 
limid ; in whieh case do Ís correct, and in that sense it is as I have 
rendered it. But if do be for di, as Windisch (Wfirterbuch, 490^, 
I. 7) assumes, the htera! sense would be " for much of cowards ts 
thcir value," i.e. their value is worih that of many cowards, 

praind cetna, "the same supper" ; *centimo-s, from dt, "first.'' 


atcessa, "they were seen," pass. pl. pret. fr. ad-du. 

leór, "enough, sufíiciency" ; O. Ir. iour; Qfca.lla'wer, "many" 
*lavtro; L. lúcrum, "gain" ; Lavema: but Ín view of h. plúrei 
for pleores thc root may be ple, " fiill. " 


hi comartha, " in tolcen of " ; Mod. Gael. mar choinharradh. 
fCad: C^m. yn-gwydd, "coram" ; ffS;ydd, "presence," 
citach ctíblíadnach : love of alliteration is manifésted ; cf. blieHee 
buadacc in " Book of Deer," 


liagair, ventum est. 

iúrthund, 3 sg. redup. s- fut. of orgim, " 1 slay" : iúrad with 
suffixed pronoun of i pl. as in ocunn, immunn; " wehe sagte 
Medb. Cuchuiainn wiirde uns tdten, sagie sie, wenn er rasend 


wird''{KZ. 30, p. 52); "il nous tuera" (RC. vi. 372=). Cognate 
wilh Ir.' orgim is O. Cym. orgiat (g!. caesor). Gaul. Orgelo-úx, 
which Persson connects with Gr. ipixBiú, iptxSfis {v. Trans. of 
Phil. Soc. for 1891-94. p. 155)- 

brdgil, acc. of brage, "neck, throat" ; Cym. breuant, O. Bret. 
brehant, *brágnt ; Ger. kragen, Eng. cra'W ; other connections are 
uncertain ; such as have been suggested suit It. brongidi (gl. raucae) 

attodaimet, 3 pl. pres. fr. aA-daimim, " confess " ; Cym. adde/, 
"to acltnowletlge, own." 


airthmd, "oats, seed" ; seems a loan-word fr. L. arcUio, -onis, 
" agriculture, arable land," hence agricuitural produee. 

ban-churi, " the women-host"; cf. Cym. gos-gordd, "retinue, 
train " ; cordd, " a circle, tribe." 

farrad, O. Ir. in arrad, fr. *ar-sod, "by-Beat"; root as in 


iama barach: Cytn. boreu, "moming"; Ger. morgen. Thc 
final guttural a^, not a c, orÍginally ; ^became ch in presence of 
a dark vowel : *mfg, mr-ego. 

indi2rra = \Tidar la. 

^M-echtair, Cym. eithyr, eithr {cf US. p. 37). 

fer-chubat, Cym. cufydd, "cubit." 

giir, OjTCí. gavrr, "shout." 

graphand=grafand, " horse-chasing, race" ; root as in 'L. grex, 
gregis + *svenni (?). 


nes cúrat, Cyin. curo, "to beat." 

geniti, "damsels, amaions" ; Cyia. geneiH, "girl, daughter." 

siri/i, " outlaws, wild fellows " ; cf Cyra. dy-hiren, " a críminal." 

urirocAia = urtraig, Eg., "sprites"; O. Ir. ertrach, "a super- 

natural beiog, spirit, spectre," cognate with O. Norse draugr, 

O. Eng. ^-dreog, Ger. inig, root drug, "to deceive, to harm"; 




Kluge cfs. SkT. druh, " offend, hurt through magic or deceit, 
fiend"; druhina, being a.n epithet of Brahma, Vishnu^ Siva ; 
O. Pers. drauga, "a lie" {druj, "ghost"). Drug or driug is a I 
common word Ín North Invemess-shire for a dealh-light ( it ia ' 
beheved to take its depanure from the house of ihe dying, whence 
it rises and pursues its course over the taps of high trees like a 
meieor wiih lapering tail, all the way to the burying-ground. 
Some are credited wilh such insight as to distinguish the sex of 
the person whose dealh it is held lo ponend. It is a body possess- 
ing a certain degree of heat, as I am assured on the authority of 
persons on whom it alighted in a churchyard. As a boy of five 
years of age, I recollect well enough being one of a company who 
witnessed this phenoiuenon, and that on that occasion it li>ok its 
way from a certain house, keeping at a varying elevation above 
the ground ; when passing over the lop of an elm-tree Ít broltc 
into two bodies of like shape to ihe original. li took its course in 
the direction of ihe churchyard, which was two or Ihree miles 
distant. It was not forgotten readi1y, for mother and son, not 
long after, died about the same time, and the funeral corlege took 
Ihe way we saw the drug go in the gloaming of that evening. I 
take the modern Gaelic word to be a loan from ihe Norse ; but 
some write it dreag, in which case it might come from the O.E. 
^^"St " apparition." This phenomenon is quite different from 
"a falling star," onc of Arrastrong's definiiions ; this latter is 
known as salchar or sgeith rionnaig. The real original of the 
drug Ís found in the Draug of Norway, where in the south Ít takes 
the form sometimes of a whiie ghost, sometimes of an insect, 
whereas in North Norway it haunts the sea, utters a terrible shríefc, 
and is described by fishermen as a man of middle height, dressed 
in ordinary sailor's clothes. Some say he has no head, others 
describe him as having a tin plate on his neck with buming coal 
for eyes. " Like Necken, he can assume various shapes. He 
generally haunts the boat-sheds, in which, as wel) as in their boats, 
the fishermen find a kind of foam, which they think to be the D.'s 
vomit, and believe that the sight of it is a death warning " (Craigie's 
" Scandinavian Folklore," p. 329). 

na=,-cerbaHd, " cuts them in pieces " ; MHG. Aare, asper, 
*kargho(,v. US. 80). 

muinier: Zimmer notes it is used as a collective of cele, "com- 
panion" Ín LU. 109'', 8; 109'', 30; 105», 30-33. Ear!y Irish 
writers speak of a monastery as a. familia ; it is thought to be 
a loan from L. monasíerium, which, however, has passed into Ir. 
as manister, gen. manestrech, dat. iimnisíir, pl. i 

This section is in many ways obscure ; lincs 15-18 are but vcry 
roughIy paraphrased. Some epithets 1 transpose in the transla- 

1. 2.— "fatted lcine of the cooking-pit," where I put Ihe last 
epithet at end of 1. 1. 

1. 3. — mooghthi, " well-fed," is guessed ; " full-siied " (?). 

!. 4, — Between 1. 4 and 5 there seems a gap. 

1. 5.— through(?) theÍncitationofthefairfifty [women?]. 

1. J-Z.—fema, gen, offem; Q^m. gwern, "alder grove" ; "he 
is a hound of split alder [shields], he is a flesh-crow {i.e. a raven of 
flesh) eager for fray." 

íran, " raven " ; Cym. cyg-fran, " carrion crow." 

1. 9.— he is a brave boar in aiding. 

I. lo-ii.— he overcomes the strength of all enemies as fire 

throQgh wood ; from the reading oi Eg. it would seem aa if 

the word had the tooi fd, "wood"; I am uncertain as to the 
latter part. 

1. 12. — "noble hound of labour of Emain." 

1. 13. — mííTíAomarc : root coinarc, "to aslt for," as in Mod. 
Gael. iomachorc, "complimenis," &c. ; hence "what is asked 
tenderly after." 

1, 14. — "he is blood of pestilence of heavy battle," or "he is a 
blood-[drop] of heavy smiting pestilence." 

I. 19.— "he is charioteer across passes" ; culmaire, properIy 
an artificer who makes a chariol (Cormac). 

1. 20. — " he is a corvus firoelii, man-subduing." 

1, 21. — "he is a shining countenance of a free-tribe." What is 
there in this case thal there should be similarity to LoÍgaire, lion 
of fences (ridges?), or to Conall the famous rider? 

1, 35. — "what is there to the Emer," i.e. why should nol Emer 
úanfebli. From the recurrence of úan=fúan in parallel contexts, 
§§ 45, 5 1, this seems to hefuan, tunica ; Cym. g^fi, whence gown, 
" a loose robe." The g\o&sfo!lcMin, " fair-haired," merely gives 
another epithet ; cf. Rmer án folt-buide, " beauteous yellow-haired 
Emer," Ín the Sick-bed of Cuchulainn. Strachan's analysis, úan, 
ÍaAa\-\-feb-\-H, is not to be thought of in view of those parallels. 
Itwould mean "gleaining, glowing, sparkHng," if one could con- 
oect it with Mblech, "sparlding"; Mod. Gael. iibheall, "a iive 
coal," also áibhleag. In LU. the g\os5 folichaiit seems to be over 
febli, which was obscure. Hence perhaps Ít means " of the 
gleaming mantle." The old Highland kilt is called breacan an 


176 NOTES 

/Mili{dh) or ebAilÍ. Madeod and Dcwar have iibhlidh; Shaw's 
Dícl. gives ebhladh, " a ki]t," and this corresponds to the present 
pronuncialion of Is]ay and Colonsay — no\. //ile,/éileadh, as in the 
North, wherc too éibMeag líecomcs ilag or eilag^ with no trace of 
■v=bh, which it stiU ]]as in ls]ay and Co]onsay.' Mr. Macbain 
derives yl'í7í, "lci]t," from O. \t. /fal, "vci]," firom L. velum. 
Armstrong marlcs the genitive offial a^/éil, but it was obsolete in 
his time, and he coutdn't know. In any casc, it would not give 
/hJili{dh), which is whai Ís required. On the oiher hand, we have 
thc verb «W/i^A, " sparWle, glitter" (Coney's Dict.); eibhligham, 
"sparlclc" (Shaw's Dict.). Inasmuch as thc derivation ham/ial, 
"velum," CDuld never give the form ebhla, ebh'li, 1 feel tempted to 
connecl UAn-eble {Eg.), úaxi/ebli (LU.) with the word in breacan 
an ebhHi, "the t>elted plaid," which Ís a continuation of the old 
lenn, spoken of as brec-lenm (Serg. Conc, 33, zi-22), the special 
form of manile known to dassic writers as sagum and laina {c/. 
" Ir. Texie," 3" ser. p. 214). Diodorus Siculus speaUs of the 
GaulÍsh sagum as strcaked or striped. 0'Curry confuscs at timc3 
lenn with Uine, and SloUes errs Ín siating that Irnn was a mantle 
forfemalesjwhereas in "OrgainBrudne Da Det^ae''Ít Ísoftenused 
ofthedressofmeníif. 93, 25 ; 94, 4 ; 95', 3 ; 95', 31). The belted 
plaid {breacan an ebhHi, breatan an /heilidh) was in full drcss wom 
overthe trews(f/! Sobicsfci Stuart's "Costumeof theClans," ist ed. 
p. 102), which latter is the continuation of ihc /uaíA-bhroc or striped 
braccae of early Irish saga ; c/. na lend-brat ligda Uík-/ada lebar 
clannach ("Mag. Rath.," p. 181"), where it is wrongly rendered 
"shirts," thus confounding Ít with Uini. 0'Curry' gives dublenna, 
"kilts" [plaids or shawls], lenna brscderga {LU. 90", 23) "red 
spotted white ki]ts (ib. p. 140), in which case he ought not to 
render lente connderg indlad, "kilts with red interweavings " 
(ib. 1 57) ; lene /or dergindlait oir iinpe, " her kilt was interwovcn 
with thread of gold" (ib. 160); lene cona clar argait immi o aglun 
co/odbrunn, "a leinidh (petticoat or kilt) from his knees to his 
hips" (ib. 106), where on the foliowing pnge he quotes to the eflfect 
that there was a handsbreadth between the border of the léinidh 
and the knee {bas eitir curthar a leine agas a ghlun), and con- 
cludes the leinidh was not wom by the inferior people. Windisch 
understands by leinidh a !ong frock {x"'"'\ anií renders the last 
passage : "«'» Rocli um ihn mit einem Randvon Silbervon seinem 
Hnie bis xu seinem Kfwch4l^ i.e. a fringed kyrtle or tunic, with a 

* The mountaÍDS of E1)linni = Slisbh-Fe]iin : v. Hennessy'9 "Mesca 

' " Manners and Customs," iíi. 145. 




bright border that reached from the knee to the ajikle. Another 
passage describes the border as exlending o adbrund co ur-glune, 
which O'C. wrongly renders "from his bosom to his noble fcnees" 
(ih. 143), where what is meant is "from ank!e 10 right over the 
knee," The Gauls wore the sagum over the braccaej the old Irish 
the Íenn (plaid) over the fuathbhroc; ihe Highlanders of rank, 
tiU not so long ago, the belted plaid over the trews (iruis). Bteacan 
an ebhHi seems to have been named from its bright colours ; the 
colour of the mantíe is sometimes referred lo when a woman is 
described ; cf. mnai bruii úani, "Ihe lady of the green mantle" 
(Sei^. Conc. 13). This makes it probable that the epithet aan- 
febli has a similar application. 

1. 26. — nuadat, gl. "king" ; cf Nuada, gen. Nuadaí, "king of 
the "Tuath De Danann" = Cym. "Nudd of the Silver Hand" 
(Hib. Lect., 611 ; cf US. 195). "What hinders Emer of the 
gleaming mantle that it should not be [our] pleasure in [ihe] 
strength of Nuada [chal she], the very powerful [one], should step 
proudly in front of the noble high dames oí Ultonia?" 

L z8. — cinged: cf Cym. rhy-gyngu, " to walk ostcntatiously." 
L 30,—" whence [so that] I consider thc dividing of it not right." 

5 7°- 

ech Ermil, " the horse of Ercol," ix. " Hercules." Irish writers 
had a tradition that the Cruithne (Picta) came from Thrace, 
that they were the Clanna Geleoin MacErcoÍl and were called 
Agathyrsi. The men who penned that must have known from 
the classics that Gelonus was the father of Hercules ; cf also 
Hib. Lect, as to the origin of the old name Gaileon for Leinster. 

all: it might almost seem as if all here meant a part of the 
chariot, but this cannot be definiiely made out. 

§71- cf Cym. gorfod, "overwhelm, c 
dligeihar, "it is Cuchulainn who has a claim ta 
ponent fonn cf LL. 346", 30, dligidir. 

arroét, t- pret, Sg. 3 ai arfoemaim, " 1 undertake." 


imrcUib, dat oi inan-rádud, "cogitatio," fr. imm-rádim, " I con- 
sider" ; O. Cym, amraud (gl. mens). BeMenberger cfs. Norse 
umraad {\}S. 34). 


fathar, Eg. "vesiruin," should here be put for <U : cf. naiAar, 

ar ro Mi=ajt ro bói. 


eUrcerty " arbitralion. 

AatUai, -z pl. sec. pres. 

daimít, pres. p1. 3 oí damim, "lolerate, endure" ; diderHan, fiit. 
pl. I ; ihe deponent form rodmaíar, 56 ; O. Cym. guo-deimisuoeh^ 
(gl. fiassae, i.e. siislulistis) ; Bret. gousaff, "soufTrir"; Gr. h. 
3aíia« i L. sub-domarc, have been compared {US. 181). 


brechta, %Ka. albricht: cf. Cyin. VívA-rith, " enchantment." 
biáil : Ger. beil; Cyin. bwyell. 

nonsiaethar, used in a middle sense (with infiiíed pronoun), 
muru'l, Cym, mwnwgl, " neck." 


calmatus, Cyni. celfydd, " ingeniotj 
comíar=co mbatar. 

Windisch gives docháineth as sec. pres. of críim'm, "1 weep"j9 
but dear[y we have here a form of canim, "sing, chaimt" ; ^ J 
dichan brichtu (Cormac's Gtossary, p. 32, sub nescoit), also Serg, f 
Conc. 48 = ^0 chansaí brechta druidechta. 


do lopimanaib: do íot di; lomman," 3. stripped piece of timber,* 1 
ír. lom, "bare," Cym, Iwmm, "nude" ; root lap, "to peel" ; Stcr. J 
lumpami, "to cut ofF." This word is diphthongised in Munstor J 
as taunt, pronounced also daum; astad for /, cf. ddidir for Idiáir, T 
1' strong," dámh for lámh, " hand " (some districts of Islay) ; cf. I 
lingua for dingua, "tongue." 


bái tra : notice the force here : sucA, moreover, was the . . . that j 
í/ §§ 43, SS- 

tairdin, "groove" (0'Curry) ; "lathe, turninB-lathe," would 
sound too modem. 

isisudi/ari{\. \Z)íori: 
the article. 


/othrend: Q.ym. goderun, "tumultuous noise." 

da /il alla! &c. 0'Curry roughlj' paraphrases it : "Speak, 
speafc, whoever be there, let them speak if friends, let them 
attack if foes." Dr. Stokes makes it : " If they are friends, let 
them notfightme; if they arefoes, let them come tome" — dividing 
the words ; md-s-iai carait co-ná-m-usn-ágat ma-s-tat nániaii co- 
m-as-r-alai (Index to Féiire, sub um). This is absurd. If they 
were friends, they would naturally not Íntend to fight Cuchulainn ; 
his purpose must be to reassure them. Dr. Stokes's rendering 
takes away all dramatic dignity. The m in .na.m.ian. does not 
mean "me," but ia part of the verb imm-agim, " circum-ago," a 
verb which yields the Mod. Gael. iomain, " shinty-play, lit. driviag 
[the ball]." The literaJ sense is "let them not bestir themselves." 
Lifcewise m in com.os.r-alat does not mean "me," but belongs to 
the verb imm-lai (whence imruláiih, | 43), and is for con.imm.os.r- 
alat, "let them betake themselves ofT, let them get awa^." 

aiaig:Íg, " impellit me" (Wb. ich', 26). 

«01/, "work, mode"; often in chevilles. 


dechsad: perhaps dechsai of Eg. is better ; after om we should 
now-a-days have de (dí) with thc daL, and oen in that case would 
be adverbial="at a gulp" : it opened its jaws so that the palaces 
at a gulp would go into its guUet. Some one has suggested oin. 

luaihidir rethir /uinnema, " with the velocity of a twisting 
wheel" (0'Curry) ; Zimmer takes the last two words as loans from 

i8o NOTES 

the O.E, vindva-hridder, "winnowing riddle," Ihe 
Gael. word being crialhar; O. Cyni. cruitr; Corn 

nativc cognate 
hroider (CZ. i. 

dedoil, "twilight' ; Cym. dydoli, "lo separate." 
roth-búali, "waier-wheel" ; cf. CZ. i. 98 ; í«a/, " the flowing' 
aluice-water " ; bual-chomhla, "a sluice" (Macleod and Dewar's 
Gael. Dict.), lit. "water-gale" ; anfhamh bhual, "the water-vole," 
often comipted Ín pronunciation Ínto labhual (Uist), labhallan 
(Sutherland) i *bo^a; Ger. bach, E. beck, "a stream"; Icel. 

mo Ihri-drindrosc, "meine drei streitpunkte " (Zimmer) ; drind, 
gen. of drend, " quarrel," is by poetic inversion put before rosc, 
" incitement " ; hencc lit. "my thrce incilements to strife"; cf 
rosc-catha, "an incitcment 10 battle" ; on the other hand, indrosc 
is glossed provtrbium (Todd, Lect. Ser. vi. 110, also ib. iv. 147). 
Hogan quotes Siokes's " Lismore Lives," p. 123 — proverb= 
arosc n-. In RC. xi. 449, it is told that Cuchulainn got his three 
indrosc or wishes from Scathach. 

tulcind, bomiwed into Cyin. as íaleenn, 

(Rhjs ÍD Archaologia Cambrensis, Oct. 1895). 
fecht : Cym. gwaith, f. " time." 

comadas : cf. Cyni. cyvathas, cyfaddas, "suitable." 

co n-dessetar. I propose to correct LU. here by "itself"; 
cf. co n-desetar, § 91 ; n? n-desitar, § 21. The Leyden reading, 
"till they came to Emain Macha," would give good sense. In 
any case LU. is here cornipt. 

dsÓd=dead, " end " ; Cym. di'wedd, " finis." 

derb, Cym. c^^'a-derw, "eousin"; cf. Ir. derbh-bhrálhair ; 
cognate with E. trw, Ger. treu. 


fianlach, oítNí fiallach, "troop, party," is nol 
fíallaige (" Battle of Mag Mucruime," 48) ; pi. r 


" Annals of Ulster," sub 817 a.d. ; from^a« + /ii(r^from *slougo-s 
(whence sluagh, "people"), which termination makes abstract 
collective nouns, e.g. ieglach, óglach. 

cichurda may be from a like root with ciocras; cf. Cjra. pybyr, 
" strenuous, stout, vigorous." 

remithir, comparative of equality, from remors Cym. rhif, 
"ihictc," rhefr, "anus, rectum, fundament " ; O. Norse ramr, 

N.B.—Ta.f: suffix -tero in O. Ir. had not, according to Ascoli 
{Supplementi periodici all' ArcUivio gloUologico iialiano), the 
value of a comparative of superiority. From the Milan Codeit 
he gives the following examples of this HutBx with the value of the 
comparative of equality : suthainidir, "as etemal"; dtnrUmidir, 
"aseasy"; j-íJ/>;íini>, "aseasy" ; dénUhir,"3.%X3.-p\Í'' ■,demmthír, 
"as certain"; sonartaidir, "as strong"; versus diniu, "more 
rapid than"; demniu, "more certain than"; sonaríu, sonoriu, 
"stronger than." 

nothescbad, &c. These words are given only in Zí/., which 
may be paralleled from the Táin : contescfad finna in aigid sroia 
ar ali 7 ailtnidect 7 imgéri {LU. ^^, 12), "so that it would cut 
hairs against a stream {i.e. the current bringing them against the 
edge) from its keen sharp edge"; nodidlastáis finnae for usciu, 
"they would cut a hair upon water" — O'C.'s "Man. and CusL," iii. 
148 ( — Ll/. 95% 34), and again (ib. p. 150) where he makes it 
" they would sever a hair upon the surface of water." There are 
expressions more or less parallel in tbe Norse sagas. 


firfer, "verum virorum, fair play," men's word of faith which 
has to be kept under all circumstances ; cf. LU. iio», 22; Tf', 7; 
64% 33- 

gráin, "strength, prowess, valour" ; cf. cáiniu di Jl(ti{ib in 
domuin . . . etir a iluagaib, etir urud, 7 gráin 7 bdig 7 cosiud, 
which 0'Curry badly paraphrases in " Man. and Cust.," iii. 92. 

las mis éiar, " whoever else of you is able 10 do it" (K. Meyer). 
Windisch reads with LU. lasiwsétar, which can give no sense ; 
the LU. scribe surely meant the m sign to come in after the s, over 

i82 NOTES 

which it is put, and before the / underneath ; Mid. Ir. ts etdt'r, " it 
is possible,'' from fétaim^ " I can '' ; pass. pres. sg. 3, ni etar sa ón^ 
"that cannot be" {Félire, civ. 1. 10). 


bachlach : this word one might render clodhopper^ but it is best 
kept, as in Scotch we have bachle^ bcLchlatu^ " to walk in an awk- 
ward manner, to shovel along in walking.'' 


cuil^ gL culexj Cym. cyliony "musca culex"; L. culex, The 
diminutive cuileag^ " fly," is a living word. 


mifri: cf, rogab mifrigi 7 mmthnechus mar Joseph^^^^ gteBX 
weakness and heaviness came upon Joseph " (Todd, Lect. Ser. vi. 
p. 41). Windisch renders oc mifrihy "jammerte" (Ir. Texte, iii. 
494, 1. 434), and points out in a note that there and in the " Vision 
of MacConglinne " it is associated with a word for weeping ; "low 
spirits, despondency'' (K. Meyer in RC. 14, 458**). 




We have not in this tale to do with the scythed war-chariot 
{carpat serda) which is described in the Táin, but with the 
ordinary chariot, the description of which emanates from a 
time when such chariots were still in use, and is substantially 
true to fact. The English words car, carriage, chariot, car- 
penter, are all ultimately of Celtic origin, which would alone 
enable us to infer that the Ceits had attained no mean pro- 
ficiency in such work as these words denote. The Gauls, 
we lcnow, fought from the esseda^ while they had another 
vehicle called covínus^ or covinnarius,^ a word the root of 
which survives in fén, " a waggon " ; in North Inverness-shire 
ftanaidh, "a peat-cart." The Cymric word cognate with the 
Gadelic, carpat, seems to have been lost, but afterwards 
borrowed as cerbyd,* "a cliariot or waggon of any Itind." 
In the Higblands, putting aside Biblical diction and its 
influence as well as Ihe heroic ballad on the chariot of 
Cuchulainn, carbad now means (i) "jaw,"^ (2) "bier," which 

is genus, quo solili suDl: pugnaTe Galli" (Fhilar- 
iL ZO4) ; " Equilatu et essEdariis . . . in proeliis 
de Bello Gall. iv. 24) ; ef. Properlius, Eleg. II. 
., where 3. four-wheeled vehicle drawn by mules 

Etat, quorum falcalia oiibus u 

' " Vehiculi vel cur 
gyrius ad Verg. Georg. 

L 86 ; Ausonius, Ep. vi 

' "Covinnos 
Mela, iiL 6, 60). 

' Tacitus, "Agricola," 35. 

* It should be carbant wen 

Cyni. carfan, "ripples of a ca 

carfan gwehydd, " a weaver's I 

' As in the saying — 

"balach is balgaire tighearo' 
dithis nach bu ch6ir leigeil tec 

' (Pomponius 

i loan-word from Irish. Rhja cfs, 
in-cops," in Scotch " lead-trees " ; 
rarfan gTiieiy, "a bedstead." 

n balgaire 



in my jexperience is the raost common colloquial use of it. 
One might infer from this that the warrior of old was carried 
in his charíot to his last resting-place. His chariot was some- 
times buried with him, as is proved by tbe Rev. E. W. StiUing- 
fleet's "Account of the Opening of Some Barrows on the 
Wolds of Vorltshire."' Very near the warrior's head were 
found " the heads of two wild boars. Inchning from the 
slceleton, on each side, had been placed a wheel, the Íron tire 
and ornaments of the nave of the wheel only remaining. . . , 
Small fragments of the original oak still adhered to the iron. 
In diameter these wheels bad been a trifle more than two 
íeel eleven inches, the width of the iron tire about one inch 
five-eighths. The diameter of the ornaments of iron, plaited 
witb copper and varnisbed green, which had encircled the 
nave as a kind of rim, was very nearly six inches. . . . Each 
of these wbeels had origÍnalIy rested on a horse." Neither of 
the horses, it would seem, measured thirteen hands; the 
wbeels of the old British chariot were also low, which was 
Ín all likelihood the case in Ireland, though in an Irish 
sculptured representation of the cbariot the wbeels are dis- 
proportionately large owing to inexperience in perspective.' 
We read in the Tain of a fall of snow wbich was as high as 
the shields of tbe men and tbe wbeels of the chariot {ferais 
snechta mbr forru eo femnu fer 7 co drochu carpaí), from which 
we might perhaps infer tbat this description corresponds with 
fact. From this tale we know the chariot Íncluded the parts 
foUowÍng : — 

(i) Tbe yoke {cuing), silver-mounted (§ 45), dronargda, 
lit silver-heavy. 

(a) The pole {sithbe), mounted with bronze (§ 50), wilh 

(3) The two wheels {droch). The droch we know to have 

' "Proc of Archafol. Institute fot 1846" (Votlt, Pt. ii. pp. 26-3!) I 
cf. "Btitish Barrows," by W. Greenwell and Ptofessor Rolleston, Oxford, 
pp. 454-45?. 

' Cf. Wood-Mailin's " Pagan Itcland," p. 247, where a drawing of a 
charíot is given ftom a cioss at Clonmacnois. Mr. Marlin etts in legard- 
ing Ii. carpat as from the Latin, On a cross in the churchs^td at Kells, 
and at Kilclispeen, a chatiot was also sculptuied. 



had interstices (see Notes), and was of bronze (g 47), some- 
times of iron (| 50). 

(4) The rira, or felloe, or tire (roíA). Sometiraes this was 
so sharp that one could not step over the edge, for Loig 
on one occasion tells Cuchulainn that he could not pass over 
either of the two iron rúíAs on account of their edginess (ar a 

(5) The fertas, pl. ferisi, apparentljf the hind-shafts (see 

(6) The body, of wicker-work (crií). 

(7) The plumage {anbluth n-én) or awning; elsewhere we 
read of the chariot having a puball or hood, a word taken over 
from L. pupilio. 

(8) The alls, of which there were a pair, which were pro- 
bahly bridle and reins combined, and belong properly to the 

(9) There was further the domuin of the chariot, according 
to Hennessy the " cross-beam," but it is not specified here. 

The description of CuchuJainn's chariot has continned in 
great favour almost to tbe present day. Versions of it are 
given in Campbell of Islay's Leabhar Na Feinne, pp. 2-3 ; 
one of these lets us see that the carbad comhraig (fighting 
chariot) was remembered until recent times as diETerent frora 
the carbad alaire or fhalaire, a word seeming!y founded on 
English pa!frey witb the meaning of "ambling horse" in 
Irish. It seems possible that the Highland/i/(ií>, " funeral 
entertainment " — a word which occurs in the well-known 
" Mackintosh's Laraent " — is a side forra of the same word.' 
The traditioral ballad versions have a certain rhythmical 
movement, and are in a measure alliterative. One version 
distinctly assigns four horses to the chariot,^ a late touch in- 
dicating a debased tradition, as is further shown by lialhmhor 
and dubh-seimhlínn taking the place of liath macha and dubh 
sainglenn. The description of tbe car-borne Cuchulainn is as 
foUows : On his bead are seven fair hairs ; brown hair at the 
skin of his head, glossy red hair above it, fair yellow hair of 

' Cf.carbad, "bier," a rdic of Ihe time when ttie dead were taUen to 
the grave in the " chariot." 

' Ccithit eich chliath-mhoir' sa chaomh charbad sin. 


the hue of gold held at the tips by Úisfairdll. Cuchulainn's 
face Ís sparkling red.' 

Macpherson did not forget to utihse the description of ihe 
chariot in " Fingal," * bul his manner of treatment is charac- 
teristic. Where the Gaelic (L 364-365) describes one of the 
horses: — 

" Su shoilUir a dhreach s bu luath 
'Shiubhalj Sithfada b'e 'ainm." 

" Bright was ils hue and swift 
its going ; Long-stride was its name." 

The cotresponding English, however, is : " bright are the 
sides of the steed ! his name is Sulin-Sifadda I " ' He mis- 
understood ihe simpie Gaelic ; but even the name Sithfada, as 
that of one of Cuchulainn's horses, is out of touch with 


The ladies have Itirtles [^tínU] (g g). Loigaire wears a soft 
crimson tunic [/iía«] having five stripes of glittering gold 
(§ 4S) ; Conall, a whitish jerldn [fuamaitt^, a mantle of blue 
and crimson red (§ 47); Cuchulainn, a soft crimson tunic 
[f'iaii] with a gold brooch at the breast, a (long-sleeved linen) ■ 
kirtle [iéifie] with a white hood embroidered with gold, while } 
his charioteer has but a shoulder-mantle [íacA/ine] with sleeves | 
opening at both elbows, and wears a fillet of bronze to pre^ 
vent his curiy bright-red hair from falling over his face (g 51). 
AU the warriors had long hair, but, so far as this saga goes, 
there is no mention of any head-dress. Further, as the heroes 
are in the travelling chariot, only such parts of the dress as 
would be visible outside the chariot-frame are Iikely to have 
been described. The giant has a different sort of tunic, called 
inar, and wears some sort of foot-gear termed drisca (g 36). 
The kirtle {/éfie, now-a-days shirí) was part of the dress of 
both sexes, and had a common name, for at the beginniog 

^ Tba' eudsn rasi dhrithleanna deai^=his couatenance is like nnto ] 
led Eparlis. 

" Sce " Fionnghal," Duan i. 345-395. 

* " A chiabh bhuidhe 'na caoíi m'a cheann " (ib. 390), 


the habits of men and women were alike, as Tacitus says of 
the Germans,^ nec alius feminis quam viris habitus. In later 
times different modes of life necessitated a diíTerence of rai- 
ment. This léne garment was entirely different from what 
we now mean by shirt, A Latin enactment of the Dublin 
parliament for lath July 1541 is to the effect that no lord or 
nobleman shall have in his shirt beyond 20 cubits of linen 
cloth; no vassal or horseman more than 18 cubits ; no kern 
(htrbarius) or Scot more than 16; grooms, messengers, or 
other servants of lords, r 2 cubits ; husbandmen and labourers 
10 cubits. None of the aforesaid are to wear yellow {craceis) 
shirts on pain of forfeiting such and 20 shiUings.^ I have 
used the word kyrtle as coraing close to what was meant, 
remembering what Chaucer says of the parish-clerlc in "The 
Milleres Tale," after spealting of shoes and hose ; 

" V-clad he was fuU small and properly 
Al! in a kirtel of a light wachet ; 
FuU faire and thikke been the pointes set. 
And ther-up-on he hadde a gay surplys." 

King Magnus Bare-foot {1093-1103), who imitated Irish 
modes of dress, went barelegged, and wore a short kyrtle and 
over-garments. It was the Irish or Scoto-Celtic léne, which, as 
Windisch rightly perceives, was no mere " Idlt," but a garment 
worn upon the body with no intermediate raiment. It had a 
hood above and had long sleeves, and extended either to the 
feet or to the calf of the legs, the mode being different accord- 
ing to sex, ranlc, and period. It is curious we have no men- 
tion of Úis fuathóhroc, which was sometimes of brown leather,* 
a word formed from \r. fuath, forma, figura + íroiT, a loan from 
ON. brokr. We know that the breeches used by the later 

' "Germania," c. 17. 

' Sic " Carew Cat." p. 182, quoted in S. H. 0'Grady's " Cal, of Iriah 
MSS. in BtiL Mus." 0'Grady thinlts the shirt served the same use aa 
the belled, but tea.ching only to mid-thigh. The bclted plaid, haw- 
ever, is rathei the continuant of the /enn than of Ihe iAií. Sir W. Scott 
thought the mantle, as in Derriclíc's " Image of Ireland," the equivalenl 
of the belted plaid. A logician might infer : Ehiit = mantle I But both 
views aie wiong. 

' KZ, 30, 85. 


Irish was a long garment, not cut at the lcnees, but com- 
bining in itself the sandals, the stoclcings, and the drawers 
{soccBS, tibialia tt fxminaliá), and drawn by one pull over the 
fcet and ihighs. It was not fjowing, buC tight, and revealing 
the shape of the limbs.' For ihe Highlands, the hose gene- 
ral!y worn so late as 1753 was described by Henderson ^ as 
reaching above the Itnee, while Burt ° says : " Few beside the 
gentlemen wear the trouze, that is, breeches and stoclcings 
all of one piece, drawn on together." Over this "trouze" 
genllemen in high dress wore the beíted plaid. 

Neither is the lenn mentionc-d Of it I have spolten in 
the Notes. There is no word aboul the timíhaig oenaig or 
assembly dress spoken of in " Laud," 610, fol. gó*"; nor of any 
of the various articles introduced to the country through 
commercer e.g. l\\t /allaing, from the 0. 'E.n^. fiiiding ; the 
ochra, from L. ocrea, "greave or leggin " ; the caimmse, from 
L. camisia, "a woman's shirt," uhimately from the Gaulish. 
Nothing is said of the ornaments, although we otherwise know 
they were valuable. Of the value of a mantle we may form 
some idea from ihe statement in Patrick's life that Cummen, 
a nun, made a mantle which was sold for a brown horse, and 
afterwaids for three cows, Druids had special garments, the 
tonach druaá (veslis magica, cassula magi) ; poets had a toga 
made of the skins and feathers of divers birds and named 
tugen; ecclesiastics had habits of their own, which do not 
of course come within the scope of the saga. To enter into , 
further details as to dress Ís not necessarj here. More or I 
full native descriptions are given in Orgain Brudne Da Dergae 
and in the Tain. There are references of importance through- 
out early and mediíeval Gaelic Hterature. For other accounts 
outside Irish, see (i) Diodorus Siculus as to Celts of Gaul, 
quoted in "Irishe Texte," ii. 214; (2) Camden ; (3) Cam- 
brensis Eversus, ed. Kelly for Celtic Society, 1850 ; (4) Leslie, 
Bishop of Ross, De Origine, Moribus et Rebus Geslis Seotorum, 
1578 ; Father Dalrymple's quaint translation is edited by Father 
CDdy for Scottish Text Society ; (5) Martin's " Western Islands 

' Cambrensis Eversus, vol. ii. 209 (ed. Kelly for Cellic Soc. 1850). 

* " History of Ihe Rebellion," Edinburgh, 1753. 

* Letters, &c written in 1726. 


of Scotland"; (6) Theatrunt Scotia, anno 1718, which has a 
drawing made circa 1695, by Captain Slezer; (7) W. Pinlter- 
ton's article, " On the Highland KJlt and the Old Írish Dress " 
in "Ulster Journalof Arch^ology," vi. 320, í^ art. "OnLeather 
Cloalt," ib. ix. ; (8) J. Derricke's " Image of Ireland," anno 
1578, curious and rare, but bitter and narrow-minded, written 
in fluent doggerel. The plates render it interesting, but they 
are seldom to be met with complete in any copy of the original 
edition. A reprint from a complete copy, once the possession 
of Drummond of Hawthomden, in the library of the University 
of Edinburgh, was edited by the late Dr. Small. A copy of 
the first edition was bought at the White Knight's sale by Mr. 
Heber for ^^15 ; the same copy sold at Heber's sale for ;ÍI4, 
and it is not petfect; {9) Sltene's " Highlanders " ; (ro) De 
Rebus Albanicis, being the "Transactions" of the lona Club; 
(ii) 0'Curry " Manners and Customs"; (12) VVorks on High- 
laad Dress, Logan; Stewart's "Tartans"; Lord Archibald 
Campbell's recent work " On Highland Dress," &c. ; Sobieski 
Stuart's "Costume of the Clans"; M'Ian's "Costume of 
the Clans of Scotland"; (13) M. Much's Runsthisiorischer 
Aílas fiir Oesterreich-Ungarn for plates of the Halstatt anti- 
quities may be added, cf. pp. 161 and 159. There we 
see riders with spears, jerkins with plaits, reaching to the 
seats. The infantry have shields covering the whole back 
and reaching to the knee. Some figures have what seem 
to be tartan trews, close fitting, no doubt the braccae ; (14) 
cf. "Ir. Texte," iii. 204, ib. 193; (r^) Watker's " History 
of Irish Bards," p. 14; (16) Major Fraser's MS. {Douglas & 
Foulis, Edin.) contains an authentic plate of a Highland 
gentleman in costume; (17) Ledwich's "Antiquities of Ire- 
land": both he and Ware are poor; (18) í;^ Pennant's "Tour 
in Scotland" for dress of the Bredalbane women, For the 
dress of the old Itish we have to rely on the descriptions of 
the older sagas, accurate translatlons of which have yet to 




Chess-playing is referred lo in § 6i ; clár fithcilli, the old 
name for chess-board, has its cognate in part Íd the Cymric 
gtvydd'lnvyll game of chess ; clawr y wyd<i bwytL, " tabula 
latnincularia." In the story of Eochaid and Etáin we read of 
a board of silver and of pure gold, with every compartment 
on the board studded with precious siones, as also of a man- 
bag of woven brass wire, In the British Museum are some 
very curious examples of old chessmen dug up from the bogs 
of Lewis, assigned, if I remember, to as late a daCe as some- 
where about the twelfth century. Most of Cuchulainn's feats 
are now only dim!y inteliigible to us; it would be hazardous 
to spealc of them with exacmess. The wheel-feat [roth-chUss, 
% 64), however, consisted in taking a wheel and hurling it so 
high inside the house with such force that it found its way 
through the roof and feU outside. Horse-races were appre- 
ciated by the ancient Gael, the phrase used being ag cor 
graphand (§ 66), where Egerton has iar car grafaind. Whether 
horse-fights, however, were part and parcel of the native 
custom is perhaps questionable. The Grey of Macha, Í.e. 
Cuchulainn's horse, kills the horseof Ercol {§ 70) after Ercol's 
gelding had killed the horses of Conall and of Loigaire (§ 69). 
These sections are later additions to ihe saga. They pre- 
suppose an acquaintance with classic myths. It was the 
ambition of the native story-tellers to let their heroes shine 
by setting them in relief against the prominent men of foreign 
peoples. Thus St. Brendan is credited with all the quali- 
ties of Noah, Abraro, Moses, David, St. Jerome, Augustine, 
Origen, St. Matthew, St. John, St. Paul, St. Peter, John the 
Baptist and Pope Gregory.i In like manner it was felt fitting 
that Cuchulainn should be spoken of as excelling Hercules. 
It wouid be the natm-al thing for the native heroes to fight 
from their chariots, not on horsebaclc, least of all to tolerate 
the cruel custom of the horse-fight. The latcer was the 
delight of the pagan Northmen, among whom the hestavíg or 
horse-fight was the order of the day. The riders incited the 

' Sce the "VoyaEeof St. ] 

' cd. O'Donoghue. 



horses to bite one another. At the Icelandic hesta]iing 
numbers of horses were brought together for this purpose, and 
umpires were chosen to decide. These Icelandic festivities 
usually ended with deadly blows.^ Now this Norse word 
Aíj/rhas been borrowed into Early Irish as est, "horse"^ and 
the practice is likely to have been witnessed in Ireland. 
In Norway the custom was not extinct till iSzo; the fight 
ended with races, which took place each year in the month 
of August on Lewisae Dag} A curious name for horse-races 
has been in use in Uist, viz. oda, which seems to be from ihe 
Norse aí, horse-fight.* 

An interesting coincidence is the fact that the last genuine 
úda took place in Uist jn the year 1820 or so. The word 
is not known in Uist save in the district of lochdar. In 
September 1898 I heard a most interesting and picturesque 
description of it from the late Rev. Father MacColl of Uist,* 
whose written testimony the reader may find in Mr. Car- 
michaers fu!l and charming description of the oda and its 
custoras in his magnificent work on the traditional hymns 
and incantations of the Highlands. In Uist these races took 
place on St. Michael's Day, the patron saint of horses. The 
foreign custom was foUowed and incorporated with other 
ancient native usages, the whole being legalised by the priest 
opening the proceedings with mass. This remnant of old 
Highland observance strengthens, in my opinion, the proba- 
bility of Norse influence in the section referred to of the 
Feast of Bricriu. 

Perhaps even the Beheading Game is to be regarded as 
having had its origin in old Celtic custom. I have already 

' See Wcinhold's Alt-nordisihes Lcbttt, p. 309. 

» RC. I 


• N!trskt Bygdisagn sataUde a/ L. Daai. Cbristiania, 1870; " Heste- 
Uampen havde navn af Skei, Den fandt Stedt hvert Aat i August Maaned 
paa Lovisae Dag. 

* This suggestion I owe to Mr. W. L. Ciaigie, Oxford. 

f* He was one of Ihe lasl Highlaud priests educated at Ihe former 
Scotch CoUege, Ratisbon. He was a good botanist, historian, and Ger- 
man scholar. From the relics of the old libiary at Ralistioti he brought 
back a Gaelic MS. HEÍtteQ in the old hand, and now in the custodf of Ihe 
Bishop at Oban. 



quoted Fosidonius on Celtíc entertainmeats, when, after the 
feast was íinished, a man sometimes, in proof of bravery, 
allowed one of the bystanders 10 cut his neclc with a sword. 
The special meniion of the axe is found in Euphorion's record 
ofold Latin observance, quoted by Athensus:' "Among ihe 
Romans it is common for five mina;- to be offered to any one 
who chooses to take ii, to a.llow his head to be cut off with an 
axe, so that his heirs might receive the reward ; very ofteu 
many have returned their names as willing, so ihat there has 
been a regular contest among them as to who had the best 
right to he beaten to death." 

To the incident in the judgment of Uath some might com- 
pare sacred legends such as that of St. Denys.' 


It has been suggested that Curoi mac Dairi's fortress is 
not to be Identified with Caher Conree, Kerry ; that the triad 
called the Three Buagelltaig of Bregia (S 83) seem to Índicate 
that Curoi's fort was much nearer Mag Breg than was Caher 
Conree in ihe Dingle peninsula. " Cu Ri is not to be equated 
with Cú Rbi. In fact, this is a case of two utterly distinct 
names having been hopelessly confounded. . . , In a field 
neai the foot of the Caher Conree mountain lies a low crom- 
lech. . . , It has the name on it of a man called Cú Ri in its 
early genitive form of Conu Ri. So the western hero was 
Cu RÍ. . . ," For Curoi's fortress we have probably to loolc 
" somewhere in the county of WicWow or of Wexford. Where- 
ever it was, Curoi was used to travel eastwards from it"* 
In the " Boolc of Taliessin " he is the subject of a Cymric 
poem entitled "The Elegy of Corroi," in which the sea is 
treated as " Corroi's wide well " ; the poet then says he has 

' "The Deipnoaophista," Bk. iv. ch. 40. 

' íia stcrling. 

' See Vita S. Dionysii auctort Hilduind, c. 32, in Migne's Palrologia 
Lalina, voL cvi. col. 47. 

• Rhjs, " On Ihe Early Irish Conquests of Wales ajid Dumnonia," il 
" Proceedings of Royal Society oí Antiquaries of Ireland," voL 3ud 
(published 1892), pp. 642-657. 



been startled by Corroi's death-wail ; then foliow two lines 
touching upon his assassin's crime. A reference is added as 
to Corroi's earlj' fame. It consists of two stanzas of twelve 
lines each, which may now be given as translated by Rhjs : — 

" Thy broad fountain replenishea the world : 
It comes, it goes, it hurries to Dover. 
The death-wail of Corroi has startled me ; 
Cold Ihe deed oí him of rugged passions, 
Whose cfime was one which few have heard of. 
Daire's son held a helm on ihe Southern Sea, 
Sung was his praise before his buríal. 
Thy broad fountain replenishes Nonneu : 
It comes, it goes, it hurries to Dover ; 
But mine is ihe death-wail of Corroi ; 
Cold the deed ofhim of rugged passions, 
Whose crime was one which few have heard of 

" Thy broad fountain replenishes thy tide, 
Thine arrow speeds for the . , . strand of Dover. 
Subjugator, vasl is thy battle-front, 
And after Man it is to the lowns 
They go . . . of GwÍnÍonydd.' 
Whilst victorious the space of , . . moming, 
News am I told of men on the ground, 
The adventures of Corroi and Cuchulainn, 
Of many a turmoil on their frontier, 
Whilst the head of a gentle host was . . . 
The noble fort ihat falls not nor quakes. 
Blessed is Che soul that meant it." 

But why should a Cymric poet sing the praises of this 
Irish prince more than that of any other? Because, says 
Rhys, " Cdrói was Carausius, and the Taliessin poet has 
mixed the Irish story of Curoi's death with that of Carausius," 
He adds : " The a Ín the unaccented syllable of Carausius had 
taken the place of an u or « as in Kanovio, instead of Conamo, 
on a milestone bearing the distance of eight mites from 
' DLstrict soulh ofCatdigan. 



Conovium, a name which, in its connection with the river, 
stiU is in Welsh Conwy with an o. On the other hand, the 
Rói of Curoi is quite a regular representative of an early 
Goidelic Hausi or Jiavesi, or the like. The name . . means 
the 'hound of Rói.'" Carausius seized the reins of govern- 
ment in Britain in 287 a.d. Eumenius calla him Menapiie 
avis, while AureUus Victor terms him Balavim alumnus, and 
Eutropius designates hlm vilissime nalus. Ftolemj places a 
TAavairla izáXi'i in Ireland, somewhere Ín co. WÍcklow or 
Wexford, probably some site near Wexford Haven. As to 
Curoi's being of low origin, that " need not have meant 
aHTthing more than that he belonged, which is very possible, 
to a family of the ancient non-Celtic race here." The name 
survives on a Christian monument at Penmachno, in a retired 
vaUey tributary to Ihe Conwy. It reads in barbarous Latin, 
"Carausius hic jacit in hoc congeries lapidum"; also in 
Vorago Ceruus Ín Ihe Menai Straits (Nennius), in modern 
Cymric Pull Cerys (Pool of Cerys). These names, says 
Rh^s, go back "possibly to a time when the great admiral 
and his doings had already entered the domain of mythology." 
The inference I should draw from what has been set forth 
is, that the Cymric poem may have referred to Carausius, but 
that the poet in part confused the events of that hero's life 
with the more archaic adventures of Curoi and Cuchulainn 
which the Cymric poet could have heard narrated by many 
of the Gaels who took part in Ihe early Irish conquesCs of 
Wales. The name Cú Rói is often written Curuí, e^. once 
in § 89, twice in § 90, thrice in § 8o, while in g 79 Curui and 
Cúréi altemate in the same sentence. The Egerton variant 
for I 80 once has Curi; the Edinburgh version has Curui, 
§ loa. It should be noted that in the second part of this 
name the mark of length is over the f. Nor must we forget 
a phonetic fact which may easily be jllustrated in Ireland 
as well as in the Highlands, viz., ui being sounded as i, some- 
what like ee in Eng. seed. Thus I have marked brih as a 
Connaught pronunciation of bmith, "boil." In Henehry 
(pp. 44-46) one may íind more examples of ui as /, i, accord- 
Íng as it is short or long. One cannot set aside the persistency 
of Irish tradition in locating Curoi's fortress somewhere in 




the south-west. In the Mesca Vlad, Cunii mac Daire's 
fortress Ís at Tara-I,uachra, where he feasts Ailill and Mfeve, 
who have given him their youngest son in fosterage. This 
place was in the neighbourhood of Abbeyfeale, on the borders 
of Limerick and Kerry.' 

The escapades of Curoi's wife, Elathnat, with Cuchulainn 
íormed the subject of a well-lcnown Irish romance, One 
November eve Cuchulainn came lo the vicinity of Fort Curoi, 
nor had he long to wait ere he saw its waters tuming white, 
a signal agreed upon between hitnself and Bláthnat.^ The 
seque! was that " Cuchulainn entered Cilroi's fort unopposed 
and s!ew its owner, who happened to be asleep with his head 
on Bláthnat's lap. Cuchulainn took away Bláthnat, with the 
famous cows and caldron ; but he was not long to have 
possession of his new wife, for Cúroi's poet and barper, called 
Ferceirtne, resolved to avenge his master ; so he paid a visit 
to Cuchulainn and Bláthnat in Ulster, where he was gladly 
received by them ; but one day when the Ultonian nobles 
happened to be at a spot bordering on a high cliff, Ferceirtne 
suddenly clasped his arms round Bláthnat, and flinging him- 
self with her over the cliff, they died together." * 

Cabir Conri, Dunsobhairce (now Dunseverick, Antrim), 
Dun Cearmna (on the old Head of Kinsa!e, co. Cork) formed 
a triad of the old buildings in Erin. As to the flrst, situated 
nearly midway between the bay of Tralee on the north and 
that of Castlemaine on the south, while it is 2796 feet above 
the sea-level, I may quote from a description by the late John 
Windele in the "Ulster Journal of ArchEology" for the year 
1860 (vol. viii. p. 118), where it is stated that nowhere does 
the wall exceed nine feet in height : " its greatest present 
breadth is 11 ft., but its probable original width was not 
more than 6 ft. No cement was anywhere used in its con- 
struction . . . its whole length is . . . 360 ft, ■ , ■ Beyond 

' Mannns and Cusloma, iií. 132. 

' For references see notes on Blathnal, Curoi, Falga. 

^ " Hib. Lect." p. 474, where he classifies Cuioi among the (!ark 
divinities, a sort of Dis or Fluto. Much the same view is taken ia 
Standish 0'Grady's " Hisl. of Ireland" {p. 220°), where he views Curoi 
"asthe greal Souihern marine genius cotrcEpondinE to Manaimán Braongst 
the Northern Irish." 




the rampart, a further examination disclosed no appearance of 

earthworlc, fosse, or ouler circumvallation. . . . There is out- 
side the wall a reraarUable hollow, aboui 4 fi. across." 

" Inside the wall," Dr. VVood says, "there are six or eight pits, 
and he was informed that formerlj' there were twelve of them. 
These pits offer a curious subject for investigation, as they may 
probably have formed sites for sunlcen restdences, similar to 
those of the ancient Britons." 

Mr. Standish 0'Grady ' spealts of Cahir Conroi (jíV) as a 
"cyclopean structure of immense extent on the Slieve Mish 
range, beyond Tralee, and perched upon the very edge of a 
steep cliff overhanging the sea, and the two gatehouses are 
still in existence opposite the wide entrance. The lake is 
diy, but the soil, a cut-away bog, shows thaC it (the lake) must 
have been there once, and the stream thaC runs down the 
hill-side is still called the Finn-glas or white-stream. Here 
too is a place of giant stones still called Cuchulainn's House, 
and a valley, — the Valley of the Stable, where the great cham- 
pion stabled his giant steeds, and where weird neighings are 
heard at night, according to locai fairy lore." Mr. 0'Grady, 
moreover, adds, that the walls at the top are 14 feet thick, 
and below, where the ledge, which runs round the cathairs 
on the inner side, begins, are 2t. Some of the stones of 
this wali are 14 feet long. It is probably one of the greatest 
of the kind in Europe." I have not been up the mountain 
myself, and I can merely observe that O'Donovan, aC least 
when he editcd the " Battle of Magh Rath," thoughc the wall 
to be but " a natural ledge of rocks." Even, however, if that 
were so, there would be sufficient basis for the human phan- 
tasy to work upon so as to depict the place as tbe abode of a 
more than human lord. It is emphacically in the character 
of the superhuman that Curoi meeCs us in the saga ; he is a 
being "of imagination all compact," even if the Celcic phan- 
tasy may here have received some underlying impulse from 
the clash of hostile races. For some (non-Celtic tribe?) of 
Erin, Curoi may have fiUed the position of Cuchulainn, and as 
soon as the early Celtic phantasy absorhed the myihic brood- 
' "History of Ireland,"p. 220; cf. 0'Curry's " Mannets and Cusloms," 



ings of a conquered, and, in course of time, more or less 
assimjlated race, it did so the more easily by branding that 
being as a type of the forces of darlcness and of dread. Later 
on something anaiogous took place when the Christian spirit 
stereotyped ihe gods of the Celtic mythos as the demons 
expelled ftom Paradise. 

But the gods do not easily die, neither does the spirit 
which gave them life. The names change, the substance is 
eternaL The Curoi of the saga is a great magician, really 
an other-world power, at any rate a water-demon like Grendel. 
In the Dun Rudraige-Ailill recension the heroes seC out to 
seek a magician, going first to Vellow-son.of-rair (Budi mac 
Bain) at his ford {§ 75), next to Terror-son-of-Greatfear (Uath 
mac Imomain) at his loch (§ 76). In the Emain-Curoi re- 
cension, as they set out to seek Curoi a magic mist surrounds 
them and they happen to meet with the magician {scál, g 37). 

Cuchulainn alone overcame him, for ConaU and Loigaire 
fled. So, too, in the encounter with the cats at Cruachan, 
Cuchulainn alone fled not. In the conflict at Fort Curoi, 
Cuchulainn alone is a match for the sirens and for the water- 
demon, the spirit of the lake, Cuchulainn alone is victor. 
Zimmer, who keeps clear of vague mythologising, interprets 
this in the sense that Cuchulainn alone, lilce certain classic 
heroes, could fotce his way to the underworld.^ 

Above all, when the heroes arrive at Fori Curoi, a castle by 
the sea, it turns out (g 79) that Curoi knew beforehand of 
their coming and had made plans accordingly. This is equal 
to saying thaC the magician seeks the heroes. That such was 
the real intent is revealed by the fact that when Curoi reCurns 
a second cime in disguise in order to conlirm his judgment, 
the Ecene passes at the Hostel of the Red Branch. The 
otber-world spirit puts himself at the service of a mortal 
The man who acts with courage gets the aid of the higher 

^ " Hierin liegt wol, daas Cuchulainn uisprilnglicli allein in die unter- 
wcll vordiang" (Z. f. D. A. 32, 33Í-333)- 




The whirling castle meets us Ín the saga as Curoi's strong- 
hold, which revolved as swirt!y as a millstone (§ 80). And 
ín Chaucer'a " House of Fame" we meet — 

" An hous that Domus Dedali 
That Zjobgrinlus deped is. 

And evermo, so swift as thought, 
This queynte hous aboute wente, 
Tbat never-mo hit stille siente. 


Ne shalt ihou never cunne ginne 
To come in-to hit, out of doute, 
So faste hit whirleth, lo, aboute." 

Yet its entrances are as numerous as the leaves on the 
trees ; on the roof are a thousand holes ; its doors wete ever 
open ; it was sixty miles in length, and ever fuU "of dyvers 
acddent." The underlying idea is sirailar in both.^ 

The German poem Diu Kr6ne has likewise a revolving 
castle, the ramparts of which are surmounted with human 
heads. On having spurred his sleed through the entrance, 
he is received by a dwarf, who brings him to a chamber where 
a strangely attired man, carrying an axe on his shoulder, 
entertains him. After the meal, he offets Gawain the choice 
of smiting ofT the host's head that evening (provided the host 
were allowed to do to him the same to-morrow), or of allowing 
his host to smite off his visitor's head on the spot. The fitst 
alternative is accepted, but ihere are only two feints at strilting 
off the head. Gawain's courage has been tested and proved. 
His host is Gansguoter, a magician, with whom Arthur's 
mother had eloped, and the uncle of Amurfina, Gawain's 
lady-love. Miss Weston ^ notes that the three blows of the 

' OCÍQrthei 
Maelduin," cxji 
castle fuU of e¥etylhing, 

° " The LeECOd of Sir Gawi 
p. 93 the giaDt is called Uath m 

Gaelic ground, the whirling rampart in "Voyage of 
CampbeU's "Wesl Highland Tales," iii. 406, for a 
herd for Ihe geese. 

," p. 94. In the abstract tbere given on 
^««omain, which should be Inun 


oldest Irish MS. are only found in the English version. In 
none of the existing Anglo-Norman romances is the tale told 
as in " Sir Gawayne and the Green Knight." In all the other 
versions, except in the English one, ihe strange man pro- 
poses (as an alternative in some) to cut off the hero's head, 
it being allowed to behead himself in turn. But this fotm 
of the champion's covenant Ís evidently absurd. Gawaynel 
delivers his blow and is quite tranquil as he sees his ad- 
versary's head roli off; it is onIy when he sees the Green 
Knight take it up that he comprehends with whom he has 
to do. Nevertheless, he faithfuU^ lceeps to his plighted word, | 
whích he would not have given had he from the first per- j 
ceived he had to do with a supernatural Ijeing. Such a being ' 
it would be useless to defy. The superiority of the Enghsh 
poem is here incontestable, and proves that it does not depend 
on the existing Norman-French versions. It is, on the other 
hand, in certain respects in close agreement with the Irish. 
Some say that Blathnat was a daughter of Conchobar, whose 
son-in-law Cuchulainn would thus be. It is hkely that in an 
older version Cuchulainn's father, Sualtam, tooic the place of 
Curoi {§ 7z). But we othetwise know that not Sualtam but 
Conchobar was suspected to be Cuchulainn's falher, — a con- 
fusion which was introduced perhaps through the dimly 
remembered relationship with Bláthnat. The ciash of hostile 
mythologies as well as of hostile races may have introduced 
this confusion, but enough light is left whereby to see that 
the purport of his being so keen as to the championship was 
heightened by the prospect of an other-world bride. 


The beheading incident is specially interesting and im- 
portant as it is paralleled in the early English alliterative 
romance of " Sir Gawayne and the Green Knight." ' 

' Ed. by Sit F. Madden ; also by the Rev. Dt. Richard Moiris for 
Early English Text Society. In my rtsuiBÍ of the iacidents I condense 
from Morris's oulline. 

The knjghi has in one hand a hol]y-bough, and in the other 
an axe huge and unmeet, the edge of which was as keen as a 
sharp razor. He 5eeks the most valiant of the heroes of the 
Round Tahle ihat he may put his courage to the proof, and Ihus 
satisfy himself as to the fame of Arlhur's court. " If any be so 
bold in his blood that dare 5trike a stroke for another, I shall give 
bim this rich axe to do with it whalever he pleases. I shall abide 
the first blow jusi as I sit, and will stand him a stroke, stiffon this 
floor, provided that I deal him anolher Ín return." To such efTect 
is his challenge. Ii is accepied. The Green Koight adjusts him- 
self on the ground, bends slightly his head, !ays his long lovely 
locks over his crown, and lays b.ire his neck for the blow. 
Gawayne then gripp>ed the axe, and, raising Ít on high, let it fall 
quick1y tipon the knight's neck and severed the head from the 
body. The blood burst from the body, yet the knight never 
faltered nor fell, but boldly he starled fonh on stifF shanks, and 
fieTcely rushed forward, seized his head and litted Ít up quickly. 
Then he takes to his horse. His head hy the hair he holds in his 
hands, and sits as finnly in his saddle as if no mishap had ailed 
him, though headless he was. Holding the head in his hand, he 
directed the face toward the "dearesi on the dais." The head 
lifted up its eyelids and loofced abroad, and thus much spote with 
its mouth : 

" Loke, Gawayne, thou be prompt to go as thou hast promised, 
and seek till thou find me according to the promise made in the 
hearing of these knights. Get thee to the Green Chapel, 1 charge 
thee, to fetch such a dini as thou hast dealt, to be returned on 
New Vear's mom. As the Knighl of the Green Chapel 1 am 
known to many, wherefore if thou seekest thou canst not fail to 
find me. Therefore come, or recreant be called." He then rode 
oíf. To what kingdom he belonged knew none there, nor kDew 
they from whence he had come. The appointed season came 
round, and Sir Gawayne took his way, falling Ín with satyrs and 
giants. At last he arrived at an immense forest, where be per- 
ceived a dwelling in the wood sei upon a hill. It was ihe loveliest 
castle he ever beheld. He approached it. The drawbridge is 
let down, and he is now in the castle oí the Gteen Kniglil, who, 
however, is for the nonce divested of his supernatural character, 
and appears to Sir Gawayne simply as the bold lord of ihe land. 
There follows a most noble and princely feast, after which his host 
promises to direcl Sir Gawayne to the Green Chapel, two miles 
awaY, to be there by the appointed time. They make a covenant 
between them, in accordance with which they are to exchange 



whaiever luck they niay win. After meat and mass the great lotd 
takes to the chase, MeanwhÍle the lady of the castle recognises 
the stranger as Sir Gawayne, who, howcver, is too deeply engrossed 
with the thought of his forthcoming adventure at the Green 
Chapel to tum his mind to love. The third day he accepls her 
girdle, in virtue of possessing which he cannot be wounded or slain 
by any man under heaven. This is his " jewel for the jeopardy " 
awaiting him at the Green Chapel. He took it to save himself 
when it behoved him to suffer. Thereafíer he starts for the Grecn 
Chapei and comes to a round hiU by the side of a stream. He 
walks about the hiU, which had a hole at one end and on each 
side ; he roams up the rock and hears a wondrous noise. It 
whirred like the water at a mili. Then appeared the " man in 
green" to give him his covenanted stroke. At first, as the axe 
came gliding down, Gawayne shrank a littje, but s^d he would 
shrink no more until the axe had hit him. Once more the Knight 
aims but withholds his hand. Once again he íet fall his axe on 
Ihe bare neck of SÍr Gawayne, and hamroered fiercely, yet onIy 
severed the hide, causing the blood to fiow. Thereupon Gawayne 
ijuoth ; " Our covenant stipulates one stroke, and therefore now 
cease." Then the Green Rnight made answer : " Bold knight, be 
not so wroth ; no man here has wronged thee ; I promised thee a 
stroke, and thou hast it, so hold thee well pleased. . . , Two biows 
I aimed at thee, for twice thou kissedst my fair wife ; bul I struck 
thee not, because thou restoredsl them to me according to agree- 
ment. At ihe third time thou failedst, and therefore I have given 
thee that tap. That woven girdle, given ihee by my own wife, 
belongs lo me. I know well thy kisses, lhy conduct also, and the 
wooing of my wife, for I wrought it myself. I senl her to try 
thee." . . . The Green Knight suffered Gawayne, who had confessed 
clean, to keep the girdie as a token, and invited him to hls castle 
for the New Vear's feast, " Nay," quoth Gawayne, " God requite 
your kindness. Commend me to your wife, who with her crafts 
beguiled me. But it Ís no uncommon thing for a man to come lo 
sorrow through women's wiles ; for so was Adam beguiled with 
one and Solomon with many. Samson was destroyed by Deliiah, 
and David suffered much through Bathsheba. It were indeed 
great bliss for a man to love them well and believe them not, But 
God reward you for your girdle, which 1 will ever wear in remem- 
brance of my fault ; and when pride shall exalt me, a look to this 
love-lace shall lessen it." The Green Knight tells his right name. 
" I am called Bemlak de Hautdesert, throtigh might of Morgan 1a 
Fay, who dwells in my house. She wrought this, hoping to have 


grieved Guinever and afTrigrhied her by means of che nian that 
spolce wich his head in his hand. She is even thine aunt, Anhur's 

Sir F. Madden conjectured this romance to have been 
writlen by Huchowne of the Awle Rya!e (Hugon of the Aula 
Regalis), mentioned in Andtew Wyntoun's " Cronyki!l of 
Scotland,"' whom aome suppose to have been the same as 
Sir Hew of Eghntoun (1361-81). This view has been con- 
tested by Morris, but Trauimann ^ shows the dialectal peculia- 
rities may be due 10 the scribe, while he offers considerations 
which tend to show that the alhterative Morte Árihure and 
the Py5tyl o/ Swefe Swsane are the worlt of Huchowne. At 
the same time Trautmann thinlcs that (i) Pearí, (z) CUanness, 
(3) Paíience, (4) Sir Gawaynt and ihe Green Knighi (all 
contained Ín a British Museum MS., "Cotton Nero, A.X," 
which is regarded as a vellum of the i^th century) were written 
by another author, who belonged to the West Midland dis- 
trict, the English-Welsh speaking borderland. Most of the 
critics hold " Sir Gawayne " to be a free imitalion of a French 
romance, the Engltsh poet having both borrowed and io- 
vented. That he borrowed is quite certain, e.g. in the lines — 

" He sayned hym Ín sy/'es sere 
& sayde 'ítOí Kryst ins spede'" (11. 761-762), 

we have a non-English idiom * ; cros Kryst is French, and it 
would hlcewise be the order in Celtic. An eminent French 
authority thinlcs it extreme]y probable that the Enghsh version 
is simply a reproduction of a lost French poem,* going back 
ultimately upon Breton narratives. We should then have to 

' Bk. v. ch, 12. 

> Anglia (Z. f. Eng. Phi!., No. I, pp. 109-149). 

' I am indebted to Profcssor Napier, Oxfocd, for having drawn mjr 
attention lo this. 

* GastQn Paria in Histoirc Lillíraire de la France, t. xxi,, Pocis, Im- 
prímerie Nstionale, UDCCCLXXXVlll : " Le Vert Chevalier est la vecaion 
plus ou moins fidéle d'un poime friníais ou anglo-normand, dérivant 
directement du mÉme théme quc les autres roiiis l'a^ant mieux conservé. 
Ceat bien d'atUeurs un théme celtique, car on le retrouve dans l'épopee 
irlandaise,' (pp. 76-77)' 



regard the beheading game as one of the parallel incidents 
current among both brancbes oí the Celtic stock, the Gaelic 
narrative alone having been preserved. The theme in both 
is Celtic : in the one case Norman-Frencb court-life and the 
religious environment of the period are refiected ; in tbe other 
Ibe theme is left in its earlier undeveloped simplicitj'. 

It is most improbable tbat tbis incident sbould be of 
Englisb origin. A linlc in the transmission is found in certain 
Norman-French romances ; its real origin is in old Celtic life. 
The linlcs in tbe process of transmission are obscure. I bave 
not formed any final opinion upon the subject, But there 
are some things one ought not to foiget. Some features of 
the Mabinogion point to Gadelic influence. Soon ÍE will come 
more atid more to be asked how much in tbe Mabinogion is 
traceable to the mythic-heroÍc traditions of the Gadelic race 
whicb inbabited parts of the present-day Wales down to the 
sixth century, — traditions wbich gradually filtered into tbe 
Cymric speech. There are certain Gadelic words, too, which 
appear as loans in Brythonic. Principal Rhfs thinlcs the 
borrowing was made " from the Goidelic of the native Goidels 
of this country, and not from Ireland," ' — tbe Cymric word 
ctrbyd, " chariot," is an Ínstance. 

Possibly the very name Cymry (*Com-broges), " fellow- 
marcb men, dwellers in the same land," was assumed at a 
time when it was felt tbe race was not homogeneous, but 
composed of men speaicing mote than one language. The 
Cymric emigration to Armorica took place in the latter part 
of the fifth and in the early part of the sixth century. " Tbe 
dominant language among tbem must have been Brythonic ; 
but many of them probably as yet used Goidelic, and for some 
time, possÍbly, after they settled in Brittaiiy." ^ What evidence 
Í3 there of ear!y contact with Brittany upon purely Irish 
ground? Zimmer^shows the worlc known in Ireland under 
the title Cuilmtnn was in all probability one of the Latin 

' " Goidelic Woid» io BrythDnic." v. Arch. Cambrtnsis, Oct. iSgj ; s/. 
IB. il. ao-ai. 

• Rhf s in Arch. Cambrensis for 1895, p. ag;. 
' Nennitts Vináicatus, Berlin, 1893, p. 257. 



recasts of Ihe work of Hippolytus. And connected with 
Cuilmenn is the following narralive ; — 

"Guaire Aidne, whose father Colman died as ruler of 
Connaughi in 617, succeeded lo Ihe throne and died as Iting 
of Connaught Ín 66z. He is famed in ancient Gaelic story by 
reason of his liberality and strife with Diarmait mac jEda 
Slane. His baids were on one occasion assembled in his 
palace and in the enjoyment of his hospÍtaUty, when he 
suddenly called on thera for the recitation of the famous 
epic, the Táin Bd Cualnge (the Cattle-Raid of Cualnge). Il 
turned out that none present could manage it entirely. There- 
upon the chief poet, Senchan Torpeist, summoned a meeting 
of all the bards and stor^-tellers and professional poets of 
Ireland, in order to make sure if any one of them could recite 
the Táin completely " — (Ocus asbertatar nadfetar di acht bloga- 
namma ; asbert iarum Senchan riadaltu dus cia dib noragad 
anibennachl itire Letha dofoghlaim na Tana berta insúi sair 
dareis in Chuilmeinn DoUuid Ninnie 7 Murgen mac Senchain 
dothecht sair— ZZ. 245', 4-9)= " And they said they knew but 
fragments of it. Then Senchán spoUe to his pupils to find 
out whether one of them for a blessing's sake would not go to 
the Bretagne for the purpose of learning the Táin which the 
'wise man' {Ínsúí) in exchange for the Cuilmenn had brought 
along with him to the East." 

Dallan ForgaÍU died at the end of the sixth centiiry as 
chief-poet of Ireland, and was succeeded in office hy Senchán 
TorpeÍsC, so that this event, Zimmer rightly perceives, cannot 
extend very far into the reign of Guaire Aidne (617-662). 
Zimmer fixes on the year 630, for hy that time the Cuihnenn 
had come to Ireland, apparently had been given in exchange 
for a MS. of the celebrated Gaelic Tlin. As this MS. had 
gone to Brittany, the Cuilmenn must have come from there. 
Now the Briton Gildas is the only one who bears the title 
sui, " wise," in those times for whom the circumstances and 
events íit, He had acquired fame through his work Dt 
Exddio Brítannorum, composed before 547. On his retum 
journey from Rome he stayed in Brittany among his country- 
people, who since the middle of the fifth century had sought 
a new home there in consequence of the oppressions of the 



Angles and Saxons. Since 547, in consequence of the plague 
in Britain, many more joined them. In the terrÍtory of Vannes, 
on the peninsLila Rhuys, Gildas had founded a cloister, where, 
according to the Irish Annals (_Al/. and Tigernaek) and the 
Annales Cambrm, he died at an advanced age in 570. The 
Navigatio Gildas in Hibernia is recorded in the Annales 
Cambrice under the year 565. Accordingly, after a ten years' 
stay in Brittany, well versed in the topics of the place, he 
undertools this journe^ to Ireland in 563- Without further 
epithet, he is frequently referred to as súi, " sapiens ille," and 
had at that date brought the Cuilmenn to Ireland and left it 
there in exchange for a manuscript of the Táin B5 Cualnge. 

The direct inference is that íhe " Tain Bd Cualnge " musí 
have been written in Gadic before the year 565. And if the 
TAin Bd Cuainge, why not other texts ? 

Thus there was abundant possibility for the beheading 
incident, which ultimately takes its rise out of old Celtic 
custom, finding its way into Brittany, and of being further 
transmitted, whether oral]y or in writing, both on the Continent 
and in Britain. Il al length meets us in the Norman-French 
romances. Everything we know of as regards the beheading 
game favours a Celtic origin. But that it is exclusively Gadelic 
need not at once follow from the silence of Cymric testimony. 

It will prove convenient to add here a short account of a 
romance containing some parallel incidents, the more especially 
as it is not so readily accessible. I mean, of course, the story 
of "The Mule without the Bridle" {La Mule sans Frein), a 
free imitation of which appeared in 1777, and served as the 
basis for Wieland's Sommermárchen, oder das Maulthier ohne 
Zaum, wrong!y atlributed by him to Chrétien de Troies. For 
the purpose of ready comparison I give Professor W. P. Ker's 
summary : ' — 

Paien de Maisiéres, the aulhor, begins by saying: that the o!d 
ways are besi. The poem is dated c. 1200 provisionally, but 
apparently the poet had a tastc for aa older style that was coming 

' It appeared in Felilort foc Sept. i8g8, p, a68. The original is tc 
found in Meon's Nouvtau /ttcutil dí Fabliaux, vol. L p. I (tSlj). 



Ínto fashion about that lime, and prefcrred to keep closely to Ihe 
oríginal fairy tale in its natural shapc 

A datnsel ríding on a mule wiihout a brídle came to Aithur's 
court and aslced for the help of a knight to recover her bridle fot 
her. Kay set out on a niule till he came lo a forest high and 
greai, fuU of beasts, lions, tigers. and leopards, and these came 
and knelt to him for the knowledge thBy had of the lady, and for 
the honour of the mule. Tben he passed out of the forest and 
came lo a valley ful! of fiery serpents and scorpions and an evil 
odour and cold wind ; thereafter to a pleasani plain and a clear 
fountain, and then to the river of Dread and the narrow bridgc 
{i/. Macdouairs " Folk and Hero Tales," p. 94). 

And there he tumed and went home again ; the beasts of the 
forest were no longer friendly, but íor the sake of thc mule thcy 
let him go by. 

Then Gawain took up the adventure, and passed through thc 
same places, and rodc across the narrow bridge. On the other 
side he found a narrow path leading to a castle ; tbere was broad 
waCer round the castle, and knights' heads on spikes all about, 
except on one spike. And the castle tuas aí-ways tuming, Uke a 
miU-wheel or a lop. Gawain spurred the mule and made a rush 
for the gate as it came round ; the mule got through with the 
loss of half her (ail. 

Gawain rode ihrough the castle, but found no one, till at last a 
dwarf appeaied, who greeted him by his name, but would not 
answer anj» question, and went away again. Then Gawain came 
to a deep hole under an arch, out of which there ascended a large 
viUain with 3 gisame, " black as one from the Morians' land or one 
of the sunbumt villains of Champagne." 

The villain entertained Gawain, waited on him at table, made 
his bed for him, and then propiosed the beheading game {ajeu 
paríi) • " Cut off my head to-day and I will cut off your5 to- 

Gawain accepted the challenge and bebeaded bim. The 
villain picked up bis head and went back to his cellar. The next 
day Gawain stood the test, and allowed Ihe viUaÍn his stroke, but 
the villain let him offbecause he had played fair. 

Gawain then asked for the bridle. But íirst he had to fight 

' G. Paria states the condilions proposed in La Hlule lans Freitt thus : 
"Choisia, lui dit-il, on de me Irancher !a tcte ce soir i condition que je 
trancherai la. tienne demain matin, ou d'avoir !a tienne iranchée ce soir 
i condition de tiaacher !a mienne demain matin " (a laciina in llie French 
lext here, !)ut see La Csuro'ine de H, du Túrlin, v. 13,1 12), 


wlth two lions, and next with a wounded knight, who was used to 
fight with all who came seelcing the bridle, whose heads were on 
the spikes outsidc, as Gawain had seen. Then he had to face two 
fiery serpents. Afler that the sulky dwarf appeared again, this 
time with an invitalion from his lady to Gawain to come and dine 
with her. Then he should have the bridle. 

"Vou have killed i«y wiid beasts," said the lady, who, how- 
ever seemed to bear ro ill-wiU to Gawain. The viUain and the 
dwarf waited at dinner. The lady was sister of the damsel of the 
muie, and gave Gawain the bridle. She would fain have per- 
suaded Gawain to stay with her and be her lord and lord of all 
her castles, But Gawain answered that he must go back to the 
court of ihe king The villain sio^'p^d t/ie luMrling o/ iAf castle 
as Gawain rode out. Then befell a great marvel. For when 
Gawain had croased the bridge he looked baclc, and saw all the 
streets of the place fuU of multitudes of people, carolling, singing, 
and dancing Ín great joy. The villain was still standing above 
the gate, and Gawain asked him who they were. " Sir," said he, 
" ihese were hidden in the crypts for Ihe cruelty and pride and 
rage of the beasts that you have killed. But now they say, in 
their language, that God has delivered them by your hand and 
iUumined them with all good things. The people that were in 
darkness have joy of this sight ; greater gladness can never be." 
Then Gawain too was glad, and tumed and left the place, and as 
he rode back the beasts of the forest made obeisance to him. 

As he rode into the meadows under the ^ing's castle, the 
queen saw him, and knighls and damsels went out to welcome him 
home. The damsel of the bridle thanked him and kissed him ; 
and though the king and queen besought her, and she would gladly 
have obeyed, yet it was beyond her piower to stay, nor would she 
have any escort, but called for the mule to be brought and took 
her leave and rode away alone. 


The tale aíFords testimony to the existence of carving (§ i), 
the architectnre being in wood. Chief-artificers are spoken 
of {§ 2), the word saer there used meaning in Modern Gaelic 
"a carpenter," which itself is of Celtic origin. The bed- 
furnishings (g 4) imply that weaving was well known. Musi- 
cians, singers, and professional artistes were recognised 



(S 1^1 13)- No doubt such offices were largely hereditar^, as 
the caste s^stem prevailed. Thus Riangabair's two sons 
are charioteers. We read of the enamel of the shields (§ 15), 
of a cutved yoke siiver mounted (g 45), a chariot-pole bright 
with silver mounting (g 47), a curved yoke richly gilt (g 50), a 
pole with bríght bronze mounting or vetning (§ 50), a shield 
with a rim of silver, chased with figures of anitnals in gold 

Méve's residence had twelve windows with glass in the 
openings (§ 55) — the word for which {comlá) is explained in 
the old glosses by Latin vafux, "leaves, folds." One may 
imagine rows of flint glass beads to have been set between 
borders of wood, so arranged as to serve for ornament and 
for the admission of more or less light, Panes are hardly to 
be thought of. Beads of translucent glass intermediate in 
texture between the earUest Celtic opaque glass and the 
crystalline glass which ihe Cells made in the days of Pliny ^ 
have been occasionally found with the Celtic ornaments Ín 
Wiltshire.' And Stokes from the adverb anall, i.e. "from 
abtoad," which occurs in O'Davoren's description of cruan, 
thinks the Irish learned to malte enamel from the Britons. 
The art, however, may have been known, while cettain fine 
examples of workmanshÍp might have been got through 
raetchants from Gaul as well as from Britain, 

We meet with silver, gold (very abundant at one time in 
some districts of IreJand, as the magnificent relics in Dublin 
prove), finiíruine, wilh cups of tfaese chased in precious 
stones (^ 59, 6i, &c.). An enamelled cup of bronze found in 
Linlithgowshire has been described by Dr. J. Andetson,^ 
while the remains of iron chariots, horse-trappings, and 
armour decorated with enamel and the red Mediterranean 
coral (or what is described as such) have been fouad in the 
East Riding of Yorkshire, including a spear-head and sword, 
both of iron, the latter in a curious sheath of bronze orna- 
mented with studs of red coral.* References to what has 
been found on Irish soil may he found in Mr. Wood- 

' Nat. Hist. xxxvi. c 66. 

* Proc. Soc. Scot. Anliq. vii. 45. 

* Trans. Roy. Ir. Acad. xitx. 283. 
' Archaralogla, xliii. 475. 


Martin's "Pagan Ireland," an Archaeological Slcetch. Our 
tale tells of needles (§ 65), of an axe (§ 76, &c.), of 
swords {passtm\ of a five-pronged javelin (§ 45), of shields 
with edge of bright bronze (§ 45), of a brooch of inlaid 
gold (§ 51), of spears (§ 47). The reference to enamelling 
is in accord with what we otherwise know about it as 
having been one of the Celtic arts. Thus Philostratus,i 
one of the household of Julia Domna, wife of the Emperor 
Severus, in a notice of the variegated trappings of horses in a 
painting of a boar-hunt, says: "The barbarians who live 
in the ocean form such colours on heated brass, and the 
colours adhere to it, becoming as hard as stone, thus pre- 
serving the designs made in them." It is the fact that horse- 
trappings of bronze or brass, decorated with coloured enamels, 
have hitherto been found in the British Islands alone.^ Horse- 
trappings inlaid with crimson enamel form part of the Petrie 

Our tale precedes the age of the Christian inscriptions ; 
such a phrase as is met with in § 23 — "on whom shall be 
raised a tombstone" — implies the rarity and consequent 
distinction of such. We may think perhaps of the Ogam 
inscribed stones. 

There is evidence of abundant skill in dyeing raiments; 
we have a crimson tunic (§ 45), a white jerkin (§ 47), a 
mantle of blue and crimson (§ 47), a kirtle with a white hood 
(§51). In the skill of the daughters of Erin in this matter 
I can most readily believe from my personal knowledge of 
that of their relatives — the old native women of the Highlands 
of Scotland. 


The saga aífords several glimpses of the old religious 
mythos of the Gael, whose phantasy of old was apt to see 
in every aspect of nature something almost equally divine. 

1 **The Icones of Philostratus," i. ch. 28. 

* Cf. Anderson*s " Scotland in Pagan Times : The Iron Age," p. 125. 
' ** Observations on Use of Red Enamel in Ireland," by M. StokeS| in 
Trans. Roy. Ir. Acad. xxx. 281. 




The childhood of every nation is naíve. Nature is yet full 
of goda. Do we not stiU cry to see in her something that 
Í5 ours ? Simple tives have alw£iys the he^rt open to the 
mystery of the wind and to the power of the sea. There is 
pcrhaps a condition wherein Wordsworth would have no need 
lo cry— 

" Creat God I I'd raiher be 
A pagan suclded in a creed outwom : 
So niight I standing on this plcaaanl lea, 
Have glimpses that would make me less forloni ; 
Have sight af Proteus coming from ihe sea ; 
Or hear old Trilon blow his wreathed horn." 

The present story arose under such a condition. It tells 
of the Amazons of the glen {genniti glinne), which yet survive 
in Iretand as geilt glÍHnt,'^ sprites of the firmament or demons 
of the air. "They are," says the late Mr. O'Beirne Crowe, 
"evil spirits, and represent Ihe traditiona! fallen angels who 
Ín their descent had reached ihe earth only." The old vision 
is grown not a litlle dim even in ihe ninth century but stUl 
Uath of Loch Ualh rises from the bosom of the lake, brazen 
adze in hand, to decide in favour of Cuchulainn. 'Twas by 
the banks of an enchanted loch the foremost champion of 
Scotia had seized the Grey of Macha and the b!ack Sainglend, 
his unrivalled steeds. Nor did il escape the Christian redactor 
that King Conchobar was formerly accorded divine honour 
though he was almost oblivious of Cuchulainn's superhuman 
origin. Eut Cormac,* prince, bishop, and scholar, thus 
explains : — 

" Art, 'a god,' unde dicitur Eochaid find fuath n-airt, 
Í.e. 'Eochaid the Fair with the form of a god,' i.e. from the 
comeliness of the man. Item Cuchulainn post mortem 
dixisse perhibetur domemaid art uasal, " a noble art, i.e. a 
noble god was put to death.'" This word art seems cognate 
with Mercurius^ — Artaius, the Gallo-Roraan title of Mercury. 

' See " Bláith-Fhleasg de Mhilseánibh na Gaoiiíheilge le Padniig O 
Briain Bflile-Atha-Cliatb," 1S93, pp. II, 121 ; cf. '■Manners arid Customs," 
iii. 450 ; bánáiiaig 7 boccanaig 7 geniti glinni, Lí'. 79'', 15, ao ; í/^ LU. 
77". 34- 

' Ed, " O'Donovan," Stofees, p. 3, sub. Art. 



There is further testimony as to its meaning in the foUowing 
gloss : 

fuath arta .i. fuath .i. dealb dee na.m art deus dicitur ' — 
fuath arta, i.e.fuath, i.e. form of a god, for a god is called arí. 

One inay be sure that in an earlier age Cuchulainn was 
felt to have been divine also. Uatk {i.e. Terror) survives in 
Modem Gaelic as fuath, " spectre, apparition, hobgobhn, 
demon"; O. It. /uath, "figura, forma." A Highland story 
about such a being is referred to in Mr. W. G. Stewart's 
" Popular Superstitions and Festive Amusements of the High- 
landers of Scotland " {pp. 3-7}. He is there named Fhua 
Mhoir Bein Baynae, i.e. the Big Fuath or Goblin of Ben 
Baynac. He is described as " wholly invulnerable to all the 
weapons of man, with the exception of a large mole on his 
left breast," whicb mole was the size of a coramon bonnet. 
His female consort was Clashnichd {rute Glaisíig) who had 
ber abode in Craig Aulnaic, Strathdown, Banffshire. The 
following follc-rhyme proves belief in the Fuath as well as in 
a number of oiher beings of similar character who are not yet 
extinct in the Highlands : 

" Bho gach gruagach is ban-stth 
Bho gach mí-run agus bron 
Bho gach glaistig is ban-nigh 
Gach luch-sith agus luch-feólr ; 
Bho gTich/uath bhiodh feadh nam beann 
Bho gach greann bhiodh teann da m'thóir, 
Bho gach uruis^ measg nan gleann 
Teasruig mi gti ceann mo ló." ' 

Almost every loch and river in the Highlands was until 
the present generation regarded as the habitat of some mythic 
creature. About a dozen years ago I remember spealcing 

' "Irische Teile," iii. 360. The boys in North Invemess-shire 
amused thcinselves at nighl by taking a buininE s'Íclt out oí the fire, and 
setdng it round in a circle, eiclaiming : 

" Dilean dealbhan Dé, tha na feidh air sn loch 
Thu Mac Shimi air an théiU s cha tig feidh dhachaigh nochd." 
• For origmal with Engiish translalion, see "Ancient Hynini and 
Incanlations of the Ilighlands," by Alexander Carmichael. 


with a Highland worthy of the Cian Chattan. His great- 
grandfather — lain Beag Dubh — had fought at CuUoden and 
he himself would knock any one down who said a word 
against the Prince. He told me how after CuUoden the 
Dulte of Cutuberland said to a Highland nobleman : " One 
Englishman is fit to slay eleven Highlanders." " Now's ihe 
time to try them," said the nobleman, who there and then 
went to the tent of some Highlanders taken prisoners. lain 
Beag Dubh, after getting food and three hours' resE, came out 
to meet the English trooper. Having thwarted the thrust of 
the Engtishman's spear with his Highland shield, he fcilled 
the bravest man in Cumberland's army with his claymore. 

After which I asked him about the water-bull which I j 
knew he was credited with having personal enperience of. 

" Do lhey see any beasts in Loch Bruiach ? " " Well, 1 
was passing alongside of it one night, and I heard the lowing 
of the water-bulL When there is nobody about he comes out 
on the banks of the loch ; at times he eats the grass that 
grows at the bottom of ihe loch. It suffices if he gets his 
snout above water," " And is he really there, though ? " 
" Yes indeed he is there— o ghu-i-a " — and he added as if ] 
to confirm the matter, " there are many of them in the river I 

I remember another man narrate tbat the tarbk-boÍghre 
inhabJted the same loch, that he had one horn, and was seen 
grazing by the banks at certain times with his flock of kine. 
As for rivers being held to have been haunted by the baobh 
I can recall the words of one who sang for me the Fingalian 
Iay telling of FÍonn's dog Bran ; my informant told how she 
herself had seen the baobh or washing woman by the river 
Glass. "The baobh was washing ( — a portent of drowning — ) 
and had many blue ribbons on her with a red tassel in her 
bonnet, I went down to the river's bank. ' I put God 
between me and thee.' Ah ! devil, how strong thou art! 
Whereupon she went off plup plap, and the birds cried gog- 
gog-gog ! " 1 

' " Chunna mise 'lihao 
'nlghe 's móran ribeanan ui 

■n EÍiuiclh' fagus do'n abhuinn 
;, 's tosCal dearg 'na bunaid. 


I may add that I inquired of her who the Feni (Fayn 
or Fingalians, Fenians of the Ossian Saga) were. "A 
powerful people, but they are now put down by the, 
Gospel," she answered. "Are they stiU alive?" I asked. 
"U! it is they that are, and were they able to arise they 
would conquer the world. They are lying san Dun Fhionn 
on their elbows, hut if the trumpet be blown a third time 
they will arise and conquer the world. There wete fellows 
Hke yourself who blew it twice already ; chen they fled in 
fear. They have left them worse than they found them (i.e. 
on their elbows, twixt sieeping and wafcing, as they aie re- 
puted to be in Tomnahurich at Invemess)." The sleep of 
the Fairy KnoIl knows of an awaking. 

In the feast of Bricriu the phrase ceo druidechta "magic 
{IH. druidical) mist " pre-supposes some sort of cult whicb 
many call druidism. That a certain control over natural 
agencies was held to be within the dmid's power is certain. 
Consider the lot assigned to the druid in the saga of the 
Children of Uisnech.^ The miracles of the druids were 
" mostly atmospheric, consisting of such feats as bringing 
on a heavy snow, palpable darkness, or a great storm, such 
as the one by means of which a druid tried to effect the 
shipwreck of St. Columba on Loch Ness in Scotland." ^ They 
practised initiatory rites such as baptism, for we often read : 
" Druids came to baptize the child into heathenism and they 
sang the heathen haptism over the child." Sometimes a 
druid is express!y said to have been from Britain, as in the 
case of Mainchenn.' What of virtue they taught pre-supposed 
some belief in transmigration ; re-birth was sure to the brave. 

When Ch!ÍstianiCy was finding its way into the hearts of 
the people, the popular belief in the sid or fairy mound was 
so far on the side of its doctrjne of immortality. The good 

bhúi thun na bruajcli'. ' Tha mise 'cur Dia eadar mi anus thu'. Ah I 
'dhiabhoil, is tu Iha laidir. Bi falbh thul' 'S dh'fhalbh 's b'e sin a. 
phlobartaich s a phlabaitaich s thug na h-eDÍn gog-g(^-gog ! " 

' This name may bavE lo do with celestial phenomeDa. Some High- 
landers slill cali the Milky Way, " Sliaihd Uis," short for Uisne, which 


"Hib. Líct." 

' Ib. í 


beings or gods of ancienl Scotia had become, as they are 
called ín the " Boolc of Armagh," dei terrtni, local and more 
or less friendly powers dwelling in the sid or fairy knoll. What 
the "Book of Leinster" calls uaim Cruachna {LL. ago*, 4), 
"Cniachan Cave," is elsewhere called sid Cruachna, "the 
Fwry Mound of Cniachan." 

Druidical or magic rites could not be regarded with such 
complacent eyes by Christians ; its rites were often barbarous 
and brutal, 30 that Christian belief was early anxious lo show 
how the Ínhabitants of the fairy knoll were lo be differenliated 
from the foUowers of druidic magic or wizardry. When the 
goddess of the sid comes to carry off Connla the Red, she 
distinclly tells him that Druidism is not loved, thal it has 
progressed to little honour on the Great Strand ; the Righteous 
One with his many wondrous hosts would soon come, whose 
law would deslroy the spells of druids from journeying on the 
lips of a black lying demon. Such a sentiment is due soleljr 
to a re-telling of the story of Conndla, in the spirit of a later 
time. Thumeysen regards sid as cognate with Latin sidus, ' 
"a star," frora whicH he infers that the side were originally the 
stars — pointing to stellar worship. Stokes, however, would 
equate Íl with Sabine noven-jía'M ; Latin, noven-íi'Ajy Latin, 
sidís ; Greek, <5os, "a seat of the gods"; the statue in a 
temple. Whatever the derivation may be, the belief in the 
sid included veneration for all the chief natural phenomena, 
mountains, streams, lakes, which were thought of as peopled 
with beings more powerful than man, who could often be 
controUed by druidical arts. It may also have included a 
certain worship paid to the "funeral mound where dwell the 
shades of the ancestors." 

There is certain evidence as to the existence of druids in 
Ireland, e.g. in the Tripartite Life of Patrick, the íonaeh 
druad= vtslis magica, cassula magi, a special garment for 
wizards, is expressly spoken of, while in Sl. Patrick's Hymn 
there is a special clause entreating Christ's aid against the 
spells of women,^ smiths, and dnilds. On the other hand, 



neither Fiacc's Hymn nor Orgain Brudne Da Dergae have 
the word for dmid. In the latter archaic tale the word 
druth, which 0'Curryi renders "druid," does occur, hut it 
does not mean druid, but is cognate with Old Norse irudr, 
■'a fool," and means in its GaeUc context a species of juggler, 
In Fiacc's Hymn the tribes of Gaeldom are said to have 
worshipped elves {sidí). 

Cathbath in the Feast of Bricriu appears solely in the riU 
of ^filidh, though he elsewhere figures as druid of Conchobar's 
court, and in the Táin has a hundred pupils in daily attend- 
ance, Mr, O'Beirne Crowe held that druidisni was never a 
properly established systeni in Erin, " The stray and perhaps 
the many druids whom the Roman persecution in Gaul and 
Brilain drove over here, were looked up to as raagicians, and 
as such were talcen into the keeping of our kings and princes. 
In this irregular way, however, Irish draidism was spreading 
and organising itself in due course, though it had not time for 
developmenc before the arrival of Patriclc. This accounts 
for the easy conversion of Ireland to Christianity. How 
wouid our Apostle have fared in an attack on Gaulish druidism 
about a century before the Romans had broken up its highly 
organised constitution ? . , . In the Book of Armagh we find 
fot the first time ihe druíds of Tara brought out in bold 
relief; but this is done for che sole purpose of exalting ihe 
Christian hero who was soon to destroy their power." Accord- 
ing to this view ihefiíidh, " seer, poet," cognate wíth Cymric 
givelet, " to see ; sight ; vision " ; preceded the druid by maiiy 
centuries as the chief minister of religion.^ " After the intro- 
duction of our irregular system of druidism which must have 
been about the second century of the Christian era, Úitfiliáh 
had to fall into something like the position of the British 
bards, but stil! retained much of their ancient functions." 
The Gauhsh druidism he terms metempsychosis, the Irish 
druidism transformation of one body into another. Thus ín 
Scéla na Esérgi, metaformatio Ís illustrated by the change of a 
human body into that of a wo!f, while in the tale of Tuan mac 

' "Manners and Castoms," iii. 145. 

' Beiienberger compares Veleda (Tadlus' Gerniania, VHI.) the name 
of a prophetess. 



CairiU, Fintan becomes a deer, then a boar, then a hawk. 
On this latter poinl Ít suffices to refer to Mr. Nutt's study of 
the Cellic Doclrine of Re-birlh. 

I have only to reflect on fo!k customs and beliefs wiihin 
the range of my own knowledge, to be thoroughly convinced 
that outside a certain small circle ihe old native folk-lore was 
in full force when the Feast of Bricriu was written, but the 
saga only exhibits a fraction of iL The old belief has 
been very tenacious. An American publication of last year, 
on the authority of Freeman's Journal, notes that in a Gaelic 
version of the Lord's Prayer, which up to a very recent period 
existed in parta of Cork and Kerry, instead of " Lead us noE 
into temptation," na lig sinn an draoiáhíochd was said, mean- 
ing "allow us not into druidism (or wizardry)." And in the 
Highlands, the corp-creagha or "c!ay-body" is quile familiar 
to many now living. The witch sticks an abundance of pins 
and nails Ínto the effigy of the person on whom she wiU vent 
her iU-wishes, puts the efiigy into a burn that it may the 
sooner perish, fondly believing that all the ills which Sesh is 
heir lo will in a correspondingly short time overtake the 
person she desires to viclimise. Popular belief is very tnixed 
and complex. Perhaps even after the present generation 
has leapt from the Leucadian rock, some survivors will be 
found who will stiU in some small measure retain a ineinory 
of the old customs at Halloween, Hogmana^, May-Day, 
and the First Monday of the Quarter ; witches may be held 
to have the power of shifting themselves into the shapes 
of hares, and tbe silver coin put in the gun may he!p 
to make their adversary's shot effective ; hooping-cough may 
be thought to be cured by the sight of a rider on a roan 
steed, or by drinking upon an adjacent estate water from a 
holy well out of a live horn spoon ; he who wiU not reverent!y 
place his finger in last farewell upon the corpse may be held 
unable to forget the dead ; the magician may yet contrive to 
cure heart complaint by essaying to fashioo a heart from 
boiling lead poured through a rusty key into a wooden water 
vessel, wherein are placed coins and water raised in the Triune 
name from a stream where pass the living and the dead; 
some may yet try to avert murrain from their flocks by burying 



before sunrise, in the Holy Name, on land outside their own 
estate-bounds, portions of animals that have died of disease. 
The navel of a child may be charred by fire, and the powder 
thereof put on water and given the child to dtinlí upon the 
eighth day. Children wiU continue to be born, and some 
wise woman may yet insist upon opening every iron lock on 
box or on door, at the time within the dwelling, as she may 
lilcewise do when a soul is passing, lest any hindrance be put 
in its way. The bridle of the water-horse — the last relic of 
Manannan's steed — may be called to aid, in malíing things 
hidden known ; the future may be held to yield its secrets by 
gazing through the shoulder-blade of the bear; the horoscope 
or fritlt may yet be casl. A spell for checking a flow of 
blood may be handed down in certain families ; wacer running 
from a miU-sluice, and mixed with the brains of the dead, 
may be given to be drunk from out a skull, and may be held 
as a cure for epilepsy. Some image like I^aomh Og may be 
left to the King of Inis Cé ; some fairy changeling of Clonmel 
may possibly be tried by fire ; the belief Ín the binh-debiljty 
or couvade may not become entirely extinct ; some dis- 
appointed one will yet make speed to some watIock of 
Strathdown for sacred water to cure the bewitched cattle; 
though perchance too tiroid to ask their enemy to be called 
up in vision before them in the water-vessel, they wÍU be 
ready to prove its possibiHt^ by quoting the case of King 
Saul and the witch of Endor. In that day, as now, no spirit 
may address a mortal until mortal man has first spoten to it. 

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